Today, Rep. Phil Roe, M.D. (R-Tenn.), the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs released the following statement after the Committee held a hybrid hearing to assess VA's response to the COVID-19 pandemic after 90 days.
"This afternoon, the Committee held a hearing with senior VA leaders to discuss the impact COVID-19 is having on America's veterans. Given the immense importance of this topic, I am deeply disappointed at Chairman Takano's unprecedented last minute decision to deny my office access to a livestream of the hearing so that it could be broadcast from the Minority's social media accounts. The only people who suffer from decisions like this one are the veterans we were sent to Washington to serve. Because of Chairman Takano's decision, those veterans had fewer avenues to access the Committee's discussion today on this once-in-a-lifetime crisis that threatens their lives. Had the hearing been streamed on our social media accounts as well as the Chairman's, more veterans would have heard about the tremendous job VA employees have done to care for them and to help with local response efforts in almost every state and territory. I commend VA staff across the country for their great work and remain committed to doing all I can to support them in caring for veterans and their families."