Tags: david shulkin | chief of staff | veterans affairs secretary

Top Aide to VA Secretary Resigns Amid Travel Scandal

Image: Top Aide to VA Secretary Resigns Amid Travel Scandal

By    |   Friday, 16 February 2018 02:52 PM

The chief of staff for Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin suddenly quit Friday – two days after an Inspector General’s report accused her of covering up details of an overseas trip Shulkin took last year –  Military Times reported.

Shulkin told Military Times that his longtime aide, Vivieca Wright Simpson, who worked at the agency for 32 years, decided to quit as allegations swirled around her.

"She called me this morning and told me she doesn’t want to be in this environment anymore," Military Times quoted Shulkin as saying.

Her resignation came two days after a blistering IG report accused her of doctoring emails before Shulkin’s July 2017 trip to Denmark to justify bringing his wife along as a guest on what was partly a sightseeing trip. Military Times said that resulted in a $4,000 bill to taxpayers.

The IG report says the "false representations and alteration of an official record may have violated federal criminal statutes." The case was referred to the Department of Justice.

Shulkin has suggested Wright Simpson’s email account may have been hacked.

The IG report also accused Shulkin of accepting tickets to the Wimbledon tennis tournament and lying about how he handled authorizations for his wife’s travel and non-work time.

Shulkin denies the allegations but said he would repay the money used to pay for his wife’s trip. He claims political foes are trying to push him out of the department.

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The chief of staff for Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin suddenly quit Friday – two days after an Inspector General’s report accused her of covering up details of an overseas trip Shulkin took last year – Military Times reported.
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Friday, 16 February 2018 02:52 PM
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