News Releases

While VA works on a long-term plan to reduce wait times and improve veteran care, the Trump Administration is pushing provisions that would weaken the entire VA system

Sen. Murray: “These moves show a disturbing trend toward downsizing and dismantling this VA, rather than strengthening the system to better serve millions of veterans in communities in Washington state and across the country” 

(Washington, D.C.) –  Today in a Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing, Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) questioned Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Dr. David Shulkin about whether he supports Trump Administration initiatives that would weaken VA in the coming years, moving the agency toward privatization. Sen. Murray, a senior member of the Committee and the daughter of a World War II veteran, is staunchly opposed to dismantling VA and has urged her colleagues in Congress to support a series of reforms to strengthen veteran care. In today’s hearing, Sen. Murray asked Secretary Shulkin about particular provisions that would destabilize the system.

Watch the exchange between Sen. Murray and Secretary David Shulkin here.

In 2014, in the wake of the Phoenix VA wait list scandal, Congress passed the temporary Veteran Choice Act to give veterans who meet certain criteria the option to seek outside care. As the temporary program winds down, Sen. Murray has repeatedly urged her colleagues to strengthen VA and reform community care to better serve veterans in both rural and urban areas. For more on Sen. Murray’s five principles to reform VA care, click here.