#ThrowbackThursday: Obama promised to reform the “broken Veterans bureaucracy” in 2008

Barack Obama

President Barack Obama’s response, or lack thereof, to the VA scandal motivated Politico to come up with a “Throwback Thursday” of statements he made during his 2008 presidential campaign.

Then-Sen. Obama called the VA patient backlog “an outrage” and said he was “tired of hearing stories about vets navigating a broken Veterans bureaucracy.” He promised “no more red tape, no more, no more delays.”

Perhaps the most damning clip comes from January 2008, when Obama said: “If you’re serious about our troops, then you are going to make sure that they aren’t being put in the position you are, and I will promise to make that a priority of mine when I’m President of the United States.”

“Promise Broken,” says PolitiFact. The backlog and wait times have only gotten worse since President Obama took office. It’s been a month since CNN reported that 40 veterans had died because they were waiting for healthcare at the Phoenix VA hospital. Since then there have been stories of other VA hospitals falsifying wait times.

While it’s true that the problems with the VA have been going on for years, President Obama promised to “make the VA a leader of national health care reform.” His lack of a serious response, treating the news reports like an allegation rather than confirmation of what was already known, is the latest example of his failed leadership.


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