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'I did not resign': Veterans Affairs chief David Shulkin insists he was fired

Sunday - 01/04/2018 16:09
  • Ousted VA secretary disputes White House version of exit
  • Distinction could have serious ramifications for agency
‘There would be no reason for me to resign. I made a commitment, I took an oath, and I was here to fight for our veterans’, David Shulkin said on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday. Photograph: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA
‘There would be no reason for me to resign. I made a commitment, I took an oath, and I was here to fight for our veterans’, David Shulkin said on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday. Photograph: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA

The former veterans affairs secretary David Shulkin has disputed the White House’s characterisation of his departure earlier this week, stating firmly he was fired and did not resign.

Shulkin appeared on both CNN and NBC on Sunday, after White House officials told Politico on Saturday he had resigned his position.

The distinction between the two versions of events could have serious ramifications for the already embattled department, a vast agency with close to a $200bn budget. Trump is seeking to bypass Shulkin’s deputy and appoint defense department official Robert Wilkie to lead the VA while his personal physician, Dr Ronny Jackson, goes through the confirmation process.

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