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VA Secretary
Posted on: 04/03/18

White House doctor could face the most contentious VA confirmation process ever

By: Leo Shane III, Military Times

WASHINGTON — Ronny Jackson’s nomination to become the next Veterans Affairs secretary could become the most contentious confirmation process since the department was founded 30 years ago.

But that’s also a fairly low bar.

Since the department was elevated to a Cabinet-level post back in 1988, no senator has ever voted against a VA secretary pick. All of the confirmations have been unanimous or near-unanimous votes (with a handful of lawmakers absent), or procedural votes where no opposition was formally recorded.

That includes former VA Secretary David Shulkin, confirmed by a 100-0 vote in February 2017. His total support from the Senate was frequently touted by President Donald Trump in public appearances, including one just a few weeks before Shulkin was fired by the president over social media on March 28.

In fact, no nominee for a confirmable department post over the last 30 years — totaling more than 150 individuals — has ever received a vote of opposition from the Senate, underscoring the non-partisan nature of VA work.

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