Murkowski Votes to Confirm New VA Secretary

“Red Tape and Systemic Failures Should Not Come Between Our Veterans and Care”

Senator Lisa Murkowski today cast her vote for former Proctor & Gamble CEO and West Point graduate Robert McDonald to be the new Secretary of the Veterans Administration, saying:

“The Veterans Administration is at a critical juncture in its mission to deliver the needed care that men and women have earned through serving our nation, in some of the most dangerous parts of the world.  Red tape and systemic failures should not come between our veterans and care.

“I voted to confirm Robert McDonald for VA Secretary today and commit to working with him as he begins taking on this challenging task of a top-to-bottom reform of the VA.  I invite him to come visit Alaska, where we have overcome some obstacles to care - like distance - through innovation, but still face many of the continual issues of staffing and bureaucracy, as we’ve seen in Wasilla and Anchorage.”

Mr. McDonald was confirmed unanimously, 97-0.

Background: Senator Murkowski has been tracking the unraveling of the nationwide VA scandal since it became known in Spring.  In June, she called for a thorough, swift and independent investigation of alleged scheduling irregularities within the Alaska VA system and a full response to the longstanding concerns surrounding the Wasilla Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC).  On July 2nd, she held a community listening session in Wasilla to hear directly from veterans of the problems they were encountering in their search for care.