Darrell Issa reminds Eric Shinseki of GSA head's departure in spending scandal

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Photo - House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-CA., says Department of Veterans Affairs officials are failing "to exercise proper stewardship over the American people's money." (AP Photo)
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-CA., says Department of Veterans Affairs officials are failing "to exercise proper stewardship over the American people's money." (AP Photo)
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House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-CA, stopped just short of calling for the resignation of Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Edward Shinseki today.

"There is an evident leadership crisis at the Department of Veterans Affairs that is distracting from its core mission of providing timely assistance to our nation's heroes," Issa said in response to the resignation of a second VA official in the wake of an Inspector-General report and revelations by The Washington Examiner of wasteful spending on employee conferences.

While the head of the GSA resigned so that her agency could begin rebuilding lost trust, the parade of VA officials slowly stepping down over several months without accepting responsibility is a troubling sign that the VA is not yet positioned to move beyond this abuse, --- House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa.

"When outrageous spending abuses at General Services Administration conferences were first brought to light, it seemed unlikely that GSA was the only government agency was abusing taxpayer dollars. We now know that the Veterans Affairs Department also failed to exercise proper stewardship over the American people's money," Issa said. He was referring to revelations in The Washington Post of a costly GSA conference in Las Vegas, including a photo of a senior agency official sitting in a bathtub.

"While the head of the GSA resigned so that her agency could begin rebuilding lost trust, the parade of VA officials slowly stepping down over several months without accepting responsibility is a troubling sign that the VA is not yet positioned to move beyond this abuse," Issa said.

Asked if Issa thinks Shinseki should follow the same path, a spokesman for the committee chairman said "I don't think it's there yet."

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