White House Press Secretary Jay Carney wound up with egg on his face Monday as he told reporters that President Barack Obama first learned from a TV news report that his Veterans Administration was denying medical care to vets with secret off-the-books-waiting lists.
But new evidence emerged this morning that his transition team was notified five years ago about how VA medical centers’ official wait-list times bore little resemblance to reality and risked denying military heroes critical health care.
The Washington Times reported Monday that waiting times at veterans’ medical facilities were known to be wildly inaccurate at the end of the George W. Bush administration. By the time Obama’s transition team got a post-election briefing from the VA at the end of 2008, scheduling failures were already reaching a critical point.
The newspaper received a copy of that briefing through a Freedom Of Information Act request.
Obama has come under fire before for saying he was made aware of scandal-worthy shortcomings in his own administration by watching television, including the IRS tea party-targeting scandal that rocked Washington 12 months ago and the Operation Fast and Furious saga that has tainted his Justice Department for years.