New details emerge about Ronny Jackson’s alleged misconduct

Matt Saintsing
April 25, 2018 - 5:11 pm

Photo by Xinhua/Sipa USA

Adm. Ronny Jackson, the White House physician tapped to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, gave “a large supply” of Percocet, an opioid, to a White House military office staff member, which then sent his own staff “into a panic” when the medical unit could not account for the missing pills, according to a new damning report released Wednesday, by the Democratic staff of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee.

A summary of questionable practices states, among the other assertions, that a nurse on his staff said Dr. Jackson had written himself prescriptions, and when he was caught, had a physician assistant provide the medicine.

But that’s not all, at a going away party for a Secret Service agent, Jackson became so intoxicated that he “wrecked a government vehicle,” the summary reads, an allegation he denies, the AP reports. 

The document describes three categories of accusations: problems with prescribing drugs, creating a hostile work environment and being drunk on duty. The summary contains the latest allegations that threaten to derail his nomination.

The claims came from 23 current and former colleagues of Jackson, some of which are still in the military.

On Wednesday, the White House doubled-down on their defense of Jackson.

“Dr. Jackson’s record as a White House physician has been impeccable,” White House press secretary, Sarah Sanders told reporters at a press conference Wednesday, before the Senate report was released.

“In fact, because Dr. Jackson has worked within arm’s reach of three presidents, he has received more vetting than most nominees.”

She added that Jackson had been the subject of four separate investigations including one conducted by the F.B.I., but that none of the investigations has caused the White House concern.

What she didn't address were the most recent accusations.“I can only speak to some of the personal accounts that those of us have, as well as the records that we have that are substantiated through a very detailed and thorough background investigation process,” said Sanders.

The summary did not include an instance during the Obama administration, when Jackson went out drinking, came back to his hotel and banged on the door of a staff member's hotel room, which was first reported by CNN.

At least one lawmaker is openly calling for Jackson to rescind his nomination. 

“In light of the serious allegations brought to the attention of the U.S. Senate against Adm. Ronny Jackson by more than 20 of his military colleagues, I am urging Adm. Jackson to remove himself as the nominee to be Secretary of Veterans Affairs,” said Rep. Tim Walz (D-Minn.), the House Veterans Affairs Committee's ranking member. 

“For the good of our nation’s veterans, I urge Adm. Ronny Jackson to immediately remove himself from consideration and for President Trump to work closely with our nation’s well respected veterans service organizations to identify a qualified candidate to lead the department and who will stand up to efforts to privatize VA.”

Jackson's confirmation hearing was scheduled for Wednesday, but Senator Johnny Isakson (R-Ga), the top lawmaker on the committee, along with Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), postponed the hearing citing more time was needed for the committee to investigate the allegations.