HOUSTON, Texas–Texas State Senator Dan Patrick, the Republican nominee for Lt. Governor, joined other state politicians and sent a scathing letter to Acting VA Secretary Sloan Gibson over the treatment of Texans who have served our nation’s military. The legislators are all members of the Texas Conservative Coalition (TCC).
The letter, signed by forty-four members of the Texas House and Senate, states that our veterans deserve quality health care delivered within a reasonable time frame and an honest VA administration with integrity. This action comes on the heels of the growing scandal of health care delays and fake waiting lists reported previously by Breitbart Texas. The five-page letter (attached below) begins by stating, “We are appalled by the deplorable and dishonest treatment of our nation’s veterans by the United States Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA), the department charged with providing health care to the men and women who have served our country in the military. The endless waitlists and failure to provide adequate care to all veterans are inexcusable, but even more troubling is the systemic breakdown of values and integrity among career VA leadership and employees, as revealed by their efforts to hide the truth about waiting times.”
The letter details many of the allegations against the VA and its handling of our veterans as well as the mishandling of the scandal. The legislators asked Secretary Gibson the following questions:
- What steps are you taking to ascertain the full extent of the crisis at your agency?
- What actions, policy changes, terminations, or other steps will you take to immediately rectify known problems?
- What longer-term reforms to you plan to implement?
- How will you change the culture of theVA so a travesty of this nature never happens again?
- If it does not already exist, what authority will you request from Congress that affords you and yoru subordinates the ability to sidcipline or terminate career SES or GS employees found acting with maleficence or misconduct?
The legislators concluded, “A thorough investigation is overdue. Waiting times, delays in care, and inconsistent quality of care must be expeditiously and completely addressed. Most critically, the culture of deceit, self-preservation and toleration of poor performance without consequences must be rooted out and eliminated.”
The letter was signed by Senators Brian Birdwell, Donna Campbell, Kelly Hancock, Dan Patrick, Charles Schwertner, and Larry Taylor. It was also signed by State Representatives Charles “Doc” Anderson, Trent Ashby, Cecil Bell, Jr., Dennis Bonnen, Greg Bonnen, Cindy Burkett, Angie Chen Button, Travis Clardy, Myra Crownover, Dan Flynn, John Frullo, Craig Goldman, Lance Gooden, Linda Harper-Brown, Jason Isaac, Susan King, Tim Kleinschmidt, Stephanie Klick, Jodie Laubenberg, George Lavender, Jeff Leach, Rick Miller, Geanie W. Morrison, Jim Murphy, John Otto, Chris Paddie, Tan Parker, Charles Perry, Scott Sanford, Kenneth Sheets, Ralph Sheffield, Ron Simmons, Drew Springer, Ed Thompson, Steve Toth, Scott Turner, James White and Bill Zedler.
The TCC members join with twenty-four members of the Texas Congressional Delegation who, last month demanded a VA inspector general investigation into the scandal that has affected three VA facilities in Texas. Their letter was signed by Rep. Joe Barton (TX-06), Rep. Kevin Brady (TX-08), Rep. Michael Burgess (TX-26), Rep. John Carter (TX-31), Rep. Michael Conaway (TX-11), Rep. John Culberson (TX-07), Rep. Blake Farenthold (TX-27), Rep. Bill Flores (TX-17), Rep. Pete Gallego (TX-23), Rep. Louie Gohmert (TX-01), Rep. Kay Granger (TX-12), Rep. Ralph Hall (TX-04), Rep. Jeb Hensarling (TX-05), Rep. Sam Johnson (TX-03), Rep. Kenny Marchant (TX-24), Rep. Michael McCaul (TX-10), Rep. Randy Neugebauer (TX-19), Rep. Pete Olson (TX-22), Rep. Ted Poe (TX-02), Rep. Pete Sessions (TX-32),Rep. Lamar Smith (TX-21), Rep. Mac Thornberry (TX-13), Rep. Randy Weber (TX-14), and Rep. Roger Williams (TX-25).
Bob Price is a staff writer and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.