Scott Brown Confirms Trump Is Considering Him For VA SecretaryScreen Shot 2016-11-22 at 9.05.38 AM
On Monday, former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown met with President-elect Trump at Trump Tower to discuss Brown’s desire to be a part of the next White House administration. Brown, a retired National Guard Colonel and Veteran after serving in the Guard for more than three decades, told reporters in the lobby following the meeting that he is specifically looking to head the V.A. and that Trump is in fact considering him for the job. Brown told reporters about his passion for Veterans and Veterans’ Issues and that he believes he is the best suited person to become the next V.A. Secretary. He said while he is “not competing” for the position, he thinks he is “the best person” for the job.
“I’m not competing with anybody. I think I’m the best person but there are some tremendous people out there. I don’t look at it as a competition. Anybody who takes that job, which I believe is the toughest job in the cabinet because it has really so many problems and it is so visible and people’s lives are dependent on whether you do it right or wrong,” Brown told reporters.
“We obviously spoke about my passion and his passion, which are veterans and veterans’ issues,” Brown continued. “Obviously, I think the toughest job in the Cabinet is to lead the VA because while it has so many angels working there, it has so many great problems as well. He is obviously going to take my application or interest under consideration. I’m glad that he called.”
“There’s still high suicides, there’s still long lines,” Brown said about the problems that exist. “There’s still kind of a culture of putting the soldiers as a second class person instead of making it the top priority. There have been some improvements, but with all due respect, there needs to be a tremendous amount of work there.”
Reporters asked what he would do if offered the position.
“Initially obviously I would try to work on the suicide issues,” he said. “I would try to get folks with mental health issues covered immediately. The VA can’t do it all. We’ll have to outsource some of those cases to private vendors obviously. Trying to work with the DOD so when that veteran, that soon-to-be-veteran leaves the DOD, we know what his or her needs are. There’s a breakdown there. So working with the new secretary of Defense would be so critical in transitioning that soon-to-be-veteran to the VA system.”
“And then obviously looking at the budgetary issues, prioritizing what the needs are. Seeing where the waste is, because there’s a tremendous amount of waste,” he continued.
Brown also said that he expects to hear whether or not he has a position in the new Administration after Thanksgiving.
Brown served in the National Guard for over 30 years, served in the Massachusetts Senate and House of Representatives before serving in the U.S. Senate for three years. During his time in politics, Brown has served on the Veterans and Federal Affairs Committee, the Hidden Wounds of War Commission, and the Governor’s Task Force on Returning Veterans.