Calling the Veterans Affairs scandal a “national disgrace,” House Republicans are telling President Barack Obama “to personally take action in order to make things right for those who have served.”
In a letter to the White House, House Speaker John Boehner and his top three lieutenants write that Obama should present short- and long-term solutions to the problems that have long plagued the VA, “even if it means shaking up the current bureaucracy and rethinking the entire system.”
The GOP members want Obama to push for Senate passage of a bill that would ease the firings or demotions of top VA officials and to back a GOP-sponsored plan to “address veterans who are waiting for care across the country” – or present an alternative proposal.
The letter is signed by Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia, Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy of California and House Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington.
The effort could serve to redirect some attention to the Veterans Affairs scandal after it was largely pushed off the front pages due to Saturday’s prisoner swap – and VA Secretary Eric Shinseki's resignation. The administration has said it wants to find a permanent replacement for Shinseki soon.
First published June 4 2014, 8:46 AM
Kelly Oâ€™Donnell was named Capitol Hill correspondent in December 2007. She contributes to all NBC News properties, including â€œNightly News with Brian Williams,â€ â€œTODAY,â€ and MSNBC. Oâ€™Donnell previously served as White House correspondent for NBC News covering the second term of President George W. Bush from May 2005 to December 2007. Prior to that, Oâ€™Donnell followed a broad range of stories as an NBC News correspondent based in New York City and Los Angeles. She has also served as news anchor for the weekend edition of "TODAY," and as a substitute anchor for other NBC News broadcasts.
... Expand Bio
An award winning reporter, O'Donnell was inducted into the Ohio Radio/Television Broadcasters Hall of Fame in September 2004. She has received a regional Emmy Award for outstanding live reporting of an Ohio prison riot, and has received several national Emmy nominations. O'Donnell also received two first place awards from the Los Angeles Press Club for feature reporting, and has twice been part of the "Nightly News" team honored with an Edward R. Murrow Award in 1999 and in 2006.
Oâ€™Donnell first joined NBC News as a correspondent in 1994. Before that, she anchored and reported for WJW-TV, then the CBS affiliate in Cleveland, Ohio. O'Donnell began her broadcast career at WJW-TV as an associate producer and reporter and graduated from Northwestern University.