by Printus LeBlanc
Every week the progressives and their media propaganda distributors gin up another fabricated scandal. This week it is the children on the southern border to distract from the DOJ IG report. It looks like the next attack will come aimed at President Donald Trump’s nominee to head the often-troubled Department of Veteran’s Affairs. Make no mistake about it, Robert Wilkie is eminently qualified to be the next head of the VA, and any obstacle is nothing more than obstruction of President Trump and the protection of government union dues.
Robert Wilkie has been the acting VA Secretary for the last eight weeks. He has done such a good job the President decided to nominate Wilkie to permanently fill the seat on May 18. The next hurdle to clear will be the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs vote followed by the full Senate vote. Once the hearings start, it is expected the typical obstruction will take place. The left will call Mr. Wilkie every name in the book with no proof to back anything up, and the mainstream media will carry the water for the progressives because that is what they do. However, they don’t know Robert Wilkie very well.
Before being tapped to lead the VA, Wilkie was serving as the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness. The office is the principal staff assistant and advisor to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense for Total Force Management as it relates to readiness; National Guard and Reserve component affairs; health affairs; training; and personnel requirements and management, including equal opportunity, morale, welfare, recreation, and quality of life matters.
Some might ask what Mr. Wilkie’s qualifications to run the vast bureaucracy of the VA are? His position as Under Secretary of P&R made him uniquely qualified for the VA position. The Military Health System (MHS) fell under his charge while he was at the Pentagon. The MHS provides health care to active duty personnel and their dependents. The MHS has a budget of over $50 billion serving 10 million beneficiaries across the world.
The MHS is a massive healthcare system with over 130,000 employees. The employees are spread out among 65 hospitals, over 400 clinics, and over 400 dental clinics. Sounds a lot like the VA, doesn’t it?
Mr. Wilkie has a lifetime of honorable service in and out of uniform. Wilkie is still in the reserves having served in the Navy as an Intelligence Officer, and currently as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Air Force Reserve. Robert Wilkie also comes from a family of veterans. His father was a highly decorated wounded combat soldier in Vietnam, giving him unique insights into the struggles veterans face.
Wilkie also has the support of all major veteran services organizations. The Vietnam Veterans of America praised President Trump’s choice stating, “VVA applauds the White House nomination of Acting Secretary Robert Wilkie to serve as the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. We are confident that Wilkie, a veteran of both the U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force, has the credentials and experience to lead the second largest government agency in this nation,” said John Rowan, VVA National President.
The Disabled American Veterans stated, “With years of leadership experience in the Department of Defense, Mr. Wilkie has a deep understanding of navigating federal government policies. The acting secretary is himself a veteran, and we have no doubt he will continue to build upon the strong foundation put in place by Secretaries McDonald and Shulkin.”
The President became a successful businessman by focusing on customer service. He picked Wilkie to do the same. The only question now is how much will Democrats obstruct this qualified candidate? Do they care more about the government unions funding them, or the veterans defending their freedom? We will find out soon.
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Printus LeBlanc is a contributing editor at Americans for Limited Government.