Trump Nominates Ronny L Jackson as Secretary of Veteran Affairs – Followed by Allegations and Withdrawal of Nomination

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Trump fires Secretary of Veteran Affairs David Shulkin and nominates White House doctor Ronny L. Jackson to replace him

28/03/2018
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The Senate committee on veterans affairs announces a delay in the hearing for Trump veterans administration nominee Ronny Jackson

25/04/2018
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Allegations surface from the committee's conversations with nearly two dozen of Jackson's former and current colleagues

25/04/2018
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Dr. Ronny Jackson withdraws his nomination to head the Department of Veterans Affairs

26/04/2018

Allegations against Jackson surface – April 25 2018

On Wednesday evening, April 25, a two-page document written by Democratic staff on the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee was released, which included a list of allegations from the committee’s conversations with nearly two dozen of Jackson’s former and current colleagues.

According to the summary, Jackson was allegedly “abusive” to his colleagues, loosely handled prescription pain medications and was periodically intoxicated, even once totalling a government vehicle while drunk.

Donald Trump on Ronny Jackson - One of the finest people I have ever met. Jackson accused of causing a hostile work environment, prescribing practices and drunkenness. Caricature cartoon APT

Hostile Work Environment

Individuals noted a constant fear of reprisal

Jackson was described as:

“the most unethical person I have ever worked with”, “flat-out unethical”, “explosive”, “100 percent bad temper”, “toxic”, “abusive”, “volatile”, “incapable of not losing his temper”, “the worst officer I have ever served with”, “despicable”, “dishonest”, “vindictive”, “belittling”, “the worse leader I’ve ever worked for.”

Jackson was viewed as someone who “would roll over anyone”, “worked his way up on the backs of others”, “was a suck up to those above him and abusive to those below him”, a “kiss up, kick down boss”, “put his needs above everyone else’s.”

Prescribing Practices

Multiple individuals cited the nickname “Candyman” used by White House staff because he would provide whatever prescriptions they sought without paperwork.

A nurse noted that Jackson wrote himself scripts. When caught, he had someone else (his PA) do it.

Jackson prescribed medications when other physicians would not.

Drunkenness

Multiple incidents of drunkenness on duty were described to Committee staff. Several of these incidents involve overseas travel.

At a Secret Service going away party, Jackson got drunk and wrecked a government vehicle.

Hearing Postponed Indefinitely

Jackson had been expected to appear on Wednesday April 25 for a confirmation hearing, but that hearing was postponed indefinitely as members were assessing allegations about the White House physician’s behaviour.

Prior to the allegations, the White House staunchly defended Jackson, with White House press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders stating he had an

“Impeccable record.”

On April 24, Trump had called Jackson:

“One of the finest people I have ever met.”

Before adding:

“It’s totally his decision. I don’t want to put a man through a process like this. It’s too ugly and disgusting.”

Trump did however acknowledged that Jackson lacks a background in running a government agency, stating:

“There’s a lack of experience,”

Jackson withdraws as President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs – April 26 2018.

In a statement announcing his withdrawal, Jackson refuted allegations of improper behavior leveled against him as:

“Completely false and fabricated.”

“If they had any merit, I would not have been selected, promoted and entrusted to serve in such a sensitive and important role as physician to three presidents over the past 12 years.”

“Going into this process, I expected tough questions about how to best care for our veterans, but I did not expect to have to dignify baseless and anonymous attacks on my character and integrity.”

“Unfortunately, because of how Washington works, these false allegations have become a distraction for this President and the important issue we must be addressing – how we give the best care to our nation’s heroes.”

“While I will forever be grateful for the trust and confidence President Trump has placed in me by giving me this opportunity, I am regretfully withdrawing my nomination to be Secretary for the Department of Veterans Affairs.”

On April 26, Trump appeared on “Fox and Friends” and said Jackson’s withdrawal was not unexpected. During the interview trump said:

“I even told him a day or two ago I saw where this was going.”

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