Despite the controversy over his flippant remark that the VA shouldn’t be judged by wait time because Disney theme parks weren’t, Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald declined to apologize during a Tuesday appearance on MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Reports.
“Look, we get it, wait times are important,” McDonald said. “There’s no question wait times are important. But there’s more to the veteran experience than just wait times.”
“Can you understand why people were offended by your analogy of the Disney lines to the wait times for care?” asked host Andrea Mitchell. “For people, some of whom have actually died according to all the testimonies, while waiting to be seen by the VA in the past?”
McDonald dodged the Disney question. “Andrea, I’m a veteran. I have put my life in danger for this country. I have served with those who have put their selves, their own lives in danger,” he said.
Mitchell tried again: “Now given all that, are you sorry you said what you said?”
If McDonald was sorry, he chose not to say so. “Look, as I said, I’m here to improve the veteran experience… you know, wait times are important, but they’re not the only measure of veteran experience. And that’s what veterans are telling us… It’s important and if I was misunderstood or if I said the wrong thing, I’m glad that I have the opportunity to correct it.”
Watch above, via MSNBC.
[Image via screengrab]
>>Follow Alex Griswold (@HashtagGriswold) on Twitter
Have a tip we should know? firstname.lastname@example.org