Trump Eyes Replacing His Veterans Affairs Secretary With His Energy Chief


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.

U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman was encouraged Tuesday at news reports that President Donald Trump is considering firing embattled Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin over his misuse of taxpayer money and reported infighting at the department. An armed guard reportedly stands outside his office, in part due to the upheaval and in part as a response to threats Shulkin received after the I.G. report was made public. At a signing ceremony for one of those bills in June, Mr. Trump said his secretary did not have to worry about hearing the president's old reality-show catchphrase, "You're fired". Russian Federation concedes "dozens" of civilians injured in Syria clash MORE to the White House last week and told him to stop creating drama in his agency, Axios reported Sunday.

Shulkin has been struggling with political appointees at his department, some of whom allegedly oppose his policies and are seeking his ouster.

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Shulkin has butted heads with Trump appointees at the V.A. from the outset, but the conflict came to a head after an inspector general's report found "serious derelictions" in the way Shulkin's office had handled a trip to Europe, among them allegedly doctoring e-mails to allow the V.A. head to justify bringing his wife along.

Shulkin met with Trump's chief of staff, John Kelly, at the White House March 5 to discuss the agency's turmoil. The source was not authorized to discuss internal deliberations. Perry's immediate predecessor under the Obama administration was a nuclear physicist.

Trump has eyed Energy Secretary Rick Perry as a possible replacement, a person familiar with the matter said.