Rep. Martha Roby: What does it take for someone in Obama Administration to get fired?

May 20, 2014
Representative Roby In The News

An Alabama lawmaker is joining the chorus of those calling for an overhaul of the nation's system that provides healthcare for millions of U.S. veterans.

Rep. Martha Roby, R-Montgomery, said ongoing scandals at the Department of Veterans Affairs are a "national outrage."

Recent reports showed VA facilities in multiple locations falsified data in an effort to hide information on waiting lists for healthcare. That and other controversies have led Republican lawmakers to call for VA Secretary Eric Shinseki's resignation, requests the Obama administration has rebuffed.

Roby said she fears the lack of consequences for failures within the administration has led to a "culture of complacency."

"I mean, what does it take for someone in the Obama Administration to get fired?" Roby asked.

The White House has maintained it is concerned with the controversies at the VA, with President Obama saying is he "madder than hell" over delays at VA hospitals that may have contributed to patient deaths. White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough said in an interview with Face the Nation the president is demanding answers on the VA problems.

That's not going far enough, Roby said.

"It's not enough for the President and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to be 'mad' about this. It's time for them to do something about it."

Roby and Alabama Reps. Mike Rogers and Mo Brooks are among 188 co-sponsors of a new bill that would give VA department heads greater authority to fire top-level personnel, a measure designed in to make it easier to address the healthcare controversies. Roby has also advocated for the development of a fee-based programs to improve healthcare for veterans.

"Why not contract with a local hospital or clinic when the alternative is putting a veteran on a waiting list?" Rep. Roby said. "It's time for action from the president. It's time for reforms at the VA. And more than anything it's time for results for our veterans."