By: Leo Shane III
26 minutes ago
President Donald Trump, left, accompanied by then Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin, center, hands his pen to Isaac "Ike" Perlmutter, CEO of Marvel, right, after signing an executive order on accountability at the Department of Veterans Affairs on April 27, 2017. (Andrew Harnik/AP)WASHINGTON — Veterans Affairs officials are declining to give members of Congress documents related to accusations that outside businessmen are unduly influencing department policy, citing legal ongoing disputes over the issue.
In response, the ranking member of the House Veterans Affairs Committee blasted the move as “an attempt to stonewall not only a member of Congress but the American public.”
At issue are concerns raised by a ProPublica report earlier this summer that identified three businessmen — Marvel Entertainment CEO Ike Perlmutter, primary care specialist Dr. Bruce Moskowitz, and attorney Marc Sherman — as key architects of a host of veterans policy decisions by Trump’s administration.
None of the men hold official government positions, but all three are confidants of Trump and members of his exclusive Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. Documents released by the news organization show frequent contact between the men and top VA officials last year, including discussions on policy matters and personal favors.
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