Trump eyes Rick Perry to replace struggling VA boss David Shulkin

By Veterans Administration, via Wikimedia Commons

By Veterans Administration, via Wikimedia Commons

The current VA secretary, David Shulkin, is under fire for taking a taxpayer-funded trip to Europe previous year.

White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins reports that the cabinet shakeup was discussed by Trump and Perry at lunch yesterday.

And Mr. Trump has publicly showered Dr. Shulkin with praise.

Coffman initially called for Shulkin to resign in February after the report was made public. At a signing ceremony for one of those bills in June, Mr. Trump said his secretary did not have to worry about hearing the president's old reality-show catchphrase, "You're fired". The report found "serious derelictions" related to the trip and concluded that the secretary spent much of it sightseeing and improperly accepted a gift of Wimbledon tickets.

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The dispute spilled into public over the last month, following a scathing report by department's inspector general on a business trip that Dr. Shulkin took to Britain and Denmark previous year. Shulkin has since reimbursed the department for his wife's airfare. Shulkin then told Politico that he had the green light from the White House to crack down on "subversion", adding that those who had defied him "won't be working in my operation. those who crossed the line in the past are going to have to be accountable for those decisions", he added.

Kelly did tell Shulkin that he would help him with the issues he was having with staffers at the VA, according to Axios. The source was not authorized to discuss internal deliberations.

Trump has eyed Energy Secretary Rick Perry as a possible replacement, a person familiar with the matter said. Yet in recent weeks, a scandal so severe has roiled Shulkin's department that it's drawn the attention of Donald Trump, who has reportedly come to view the V.A. head as a "major problem". Perry's immediate predecessor under the Obama administration was a nuclear physicist.

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