Trump Considers Ousting Veterans Affairs Chief

Trump's Energy Secretary Rick Perry said he has no interest in heading the agency. The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity in order to describe sensitive internal discussions, say Shulkin has been given a final warning to end the swirl of distractions.

In the wake of President Trump's abrupt firing of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Tuesday and his comments that he nearly has the cabinet that he wants in place, speculation has swirled on Capitol Hill over which administration official may be replaced next.

Trump raised the idea with Perry on Monday but did not offer the job to him, according to one White House official.

Trump has talked about firing Shulkin but was still weighing the question Tuesday, the people said. The energy department did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the report, nor did the White House.

Shulkin's security detail is also under investigation by Inspector General Michael Missal, who is expected to release a report within weeks on alleged abuses by the some of its members.

Current and former VA employees have also emailed unconfirmed statements of mismanagement stemming from the agency. And a top communications aide has taken extended leave following a secret, failed attempt to turn lawmakers against him. He is an Iraq and Afghanistan veteran with two Bronze Stars. He was frustrated that Shulkin went straight to the press to discuss what was said in their meeting.

Shulkin is the lone holdover from the Obama administration in Trump's cabinet.

Sen. Johnny Isakson, the chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs panel, and Rep. Phil Roe, the chairman of the House's veterans panel, each said they believed Shulkin had done a fine job in the role.

A physician and former hospital executive who won unanimous confirmation by the Senate previous year, Shulkin, 58, has been a favorite of Trump's, racking up legislative victories and fast reforms at an agency the president railed against on the campaign trail. The scene was first reported by Axios. The White House declined to comment.

Dan Caldwell, executive director of CVA, lauded the White House focus on Choice amid the ongoing controversies involving Shulkin. "We have a great working relationship", Roe said Wednesday.

Since Shulkin took over, the VA has continued to be riddled with scandal and a number of reports show veterans are still dying as a result of bad care.

It wasn't always this way.

Shulkin is accused of being a thorn on Trump's side after reportedly refusing to work with the president's appointees. Shulkin has said publicly that high-level political appointees installed by the White House are scheming to oust him over personality and policy differences.

Shulkin met with Trump's chief of staff, John Kelly, at the White House on March 5 to discuss the agency's turmoil.

At a January 17 hearing, Sen.

The VA secretary went on a trip to Europe with his wife in 2017 after he accepted Wimbledon tennis tournament tickets, reported CNBC.

The IG found that Shulkin's chief of staff doctored emails to justify his wife accompanying him at taxpayer expense. Wright Simpson retired after the report was issued. In a statement, Cashour and Ullyot deny that account, saying the call was intended instead to warn the committee that some of Shulkin's denials of wrongdoing were unfounded.

Vanessa Coleman