Mike Coffman encouraged by reports that Trump might fire embattled VA secretary


The news comes after Trump's firing of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Trump met with Energy Secretary Rick Perry on Monday, and multiple outlets are reporting the president is considering Perry to replace Shulkin. Shulkin drew ire from the White House for talking directly to media rather than going through his communications team, which he claims is one group that's out to get him. Shortly after becoming President past year, Trump had considered Perry for the veterans affairs secretary job. At a time when Mr. Trump was struggling to find legislative victories, Dr. Shulkin and Congress's veterans committees delivered a string of popular, bipartisan bills to the president's desk.

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He took office in February 2017 following a unanimous vote by the Senate. Perry's immediate predecessor under the Obama administration was a nuclear physicist.

David Shulkin, the veterans affairs secretary, has been investigated by his department's inspector general, which last month said he improperly accepted tickets to the Wimbledon tennis tournament last summer during a government trip to Europe. He sat at Mr. Trump's side during a cabinet meeting, and the two men together called Senator Johnny Isakson of Georgia, the chairman of the Veterans' Affairs Committee, to pledge their support for his more moderate health care legislation, according to a congressional aide briefed on the call.

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Trump became irritated with Shulkin for publicly claiming that he has to fire people and purge his agency of Trump appointees, two people said.

Coffman, who has consistently hammered the VA over its over-budget and behind-schedule construction of the new VA hospital in Aurora, said Shulkin made Americans trust the department even less because of his actions and said it was time to "clean house" at the time. The 11-day trip included three and a half days of official events and cost at least $122,334, the report said.

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