Obama Statement on the Nomination Hearing of Dr. James Peake to be VA Secretary
U.S. Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) today released the following statement on the Senate Veterans Affairs' Committee's nomination hearing of Dr. James Peake, M.D., to be Secretary of Veterans Affairs:
"I hope that throughout this nomination process Dr. Peake will show how he plans to reform the VA to sufficiently meet the needs of our nation's veterans. Under the Bush Administration, our veterans have suffered through a dysfunctional and adversarial claims process, unnecessary red tape, and lengthy wait times for health care.
"This year we learned of tragic neglect at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center and a breakdown in quality of care at the Marion VA Center in Illinois that cost lives. Giving our veterans and troops anything less than the very best treatment when they return home is simply unacceptable, and it is long past time our heroes receive compassionate leadership that honors their sacrifice.
"I look forward to hearing how Dr. Peake plans to slash the VA's red tape, reduce the claims backlog, improve mental health care, and act as an independent advocate for veterans within an Administration that has consistently under-invested in our nation's bravest men and women."