© 2022 WKSU
Public Radio News for Northeast Ohio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Sherrod Brown Agrees with Vets Groups Who Want to Keep McDonald Head of the VA

President Obama appointed McDonald, a Republican, to head the VA in 2014. Large veterans groups are pressuring Donald Trump to keep him, saying the incremental changes he's made are improving the nation's largest healthcare system.

Veterans groups are urging President-elect Trump to keep former Cincinnati businessman Robert McDonald at the helm of the Department of Veterans Affairs. And, as WKSU’s M.L. Schultze reports, Ohio’s Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown says that would be justified.

Brown, who has been a member of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee for a decade, says McDonald has done a good job straightening out long wait times and other issues since President Obama picked the former P&G chief executive in 2014. Brown says he doesn’t know if McDonald wants to remain.

“It’s not my place to ask him to stay other than to urge him to stay. I know Trump has mentioned Sarah Palin, and I would make the bold assertion that Secretary McDonald would do this job better than Sarah Palin would do it.” 

Trump repeatedly targeted the VA when he was running, calling it “the most corrupt agency in the United States.”  

Some of those suggested for his VA secretary have called for an overhaul to make it easier to privatize veterans’ health care. 

M.L. Schultze came to WKSU as news director in July 2007 after 25 years at The Repository in Canton, where she was managing editor for nearly a decade. She’s now the digital editor and an award-winning reporter and analyst who has appeared on NPR, Here and Now and the TakeAway, as well as being a regular panelist on Ideas, the WVIZ public television's reporter roundtable.