White House Shakeup On Friday, Secretary Shinseki, Press Secretary Jay Carney Both Out, Highlight Hollywood News

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It’s been the Twilight Zone at the Capitol this week. GOP lawmakers, who have been slashing the VA’s budget, now blame Secretary Shinseki for the horrific treatment of military men and women by the VA. Ronald Reagan shut down over 300 VA hospitals, and Americans are stunned that our veterans are always the one’s cut, yet it’s always happened in the history of America. And always will. Because Americans are political animals, not real patriots. They use all the right rhetoric, as they do with religion, they love a man they never met, and hate their fellow-man God put them on earth to live amongst.

 

 

 

Press secretary Jay Carney had a surprise visitor to his daily news briefing, which began not long after Obama’s visit there to discuss Secretary Eric Shinseki’s departure.jay-carney

Standing next to Carney in the crowded room, Obama said it was “bittersweet” to see his friend step down after three and a half years on the podium.

 

 

 

At the same time, Obama announced that Josh Earnest, currently principal deputy press secretary, would be taking over.

 

 

Carney said the transition will be complete around mid-June, but that Earnest will take his place traveling next week on a trip that Obama has scheduled to Europe. Carney brought rare but practical experience to the job as a former reporter who once covered the White House for Time magazine. He left journalism to join the White House as communications director for Vice President Joe Biden, and subsequently moved over to serve as Obama’s press secretary in 2011.

 

 

“He comes to this place with a reporter’s perspective,” President Obama told reporters after interrupting Carney mid-sentence at the beginning of Carney’s daily news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room. “That’s why, believe it or not, I think he will miss hanging out with you.”

 

 

A key component of a White House press secretary’s job is to regularly joust with reporters in an intense question-and-answer session.

 

 

 

Obama said that Carney had demonstrated good judgment and temperament and said he will continue to rely on his advice from outside the West Wing. The two men embraced before Obama made his exit.

 

President Barack Obama said he accepted the resignation “with considerable regret,” and appointed Sloan Gibson, the agency’s No. 2 official, as temporary secretary. Obama also said that the Justice Department would determine if any illegality had occurred, and that a top White House aide who has been detailed to the Veterans Affairs Department would remain there for the time being.

 

 

As for Shinseki, Obama said, “I regret that he has to resign under these circumstances.” He lavished praise on the Vietnam veteran and former Army chief of staff for his decades of service. He said the Cabinet officer had told him “he does not want to be a distraction” from the need to repair the agency, a task the president said pointedly could well require Congress to approve additional money.

 

 

 

A lifetime of service, in uniform and out, wasn’t enough to save Shinseki’s career, though, after agency investigators reported widespread problems in its sprawling hospital system. They reported that 1,700 veterans seeking treatment at the Phoenix facility alone were consigned to limbo because they had never been added to official wait lists.

 

 

 

In the 36 hours that followed the findings on Wednesday, Democrats in tough re-election races joined Republicans in clamoring for Shinseki’s resignation.

 

 

In an appearance before a veterans group before he met with Obama, Shinseki said, “I extend an apology to the people whom I care most deeply about — that’s the veterans of this great country — to their families and loved ones, who I have been honored to serve for over five years now. It’s the calling of a lifetime.”

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Written By: Tommy Lightfoot Garrett
Photographs are Courtesy: AP
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