WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Jon Tester told Wednesday President Trump’s nominee to lead the Veterans Administration that he wants him to succeed.
“We are seeing political interest groups given a seat at the table instead of veterans. I hope you agree that this type of behavior undermines the VA’s mission to serve the millions of veterans who rely on the VA. The VA has larger challenges ahead. It simply cannot afford to get weighed down by unforced errors,” Tester told VA secretary nominee Robert Wilkie at a Senate hearing.
Tester, a Montana Democrat, is the ranking minority member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, which is tasked with vetting Wilkie.
Tester was a key figure in the withdrawal of Trump’s previous nominee, Ronny Jackson, who backed out after anonymous allegations of misconduct were raised against him. Tester said he had received those complaints from people who had worked with Jackson in the White House medical office.
The allegations prompted critical tweets from Republican Trump, who hinted at campaigning against Tester in his re-election bid.