President Trump touted a veterans health care bill signed by former President Obama in 2014 as one of his biggest accomplishments.
“One of my greatest honors was to have gotten CHOICE approved for our great Veterans,” Trump falsely claimed on Twitter. “Others have tried for decades, and failed!”
Except the bill was signed by Obama in 2014.
“Trump did expand eligibility for the program… Veterans are to have that option for a private doctor if their VA wait is only 20 days (28 for specialty care) or their drive is only 30 minutes,” the Associated Press reported. “Still, VA’s top health official, Dr. Richard Stone, described the new program’s start to ‘almost be a non-event’ in testimony to Congress. That’s in part because wait times in the private sector are typically longer than at VA.”
Trump attacked McCain over bill he wrote:
This is not the first time Trump has told this lie. CNN fact-checker Daniel Dale counted at least 56 times that Trump repeated this false claim last year and 109 times since his inauguration.
Trump told the lie in May of 2019 to attack then-Sen. John McCain as he battled cancer.
"I disagree with John McCain on the way he handled the vets, because I said you got to get Choice. He was never able to get Choice. I got Choice," Trump falsely told reporters in May.
Except McCain is literally the one who was able to get Choice.
McCain authored the bill with Sen. Bernie Sanders in 2014.
“The two senators began negotiations after it looked as though VA reform might become another victim of the chamber’s gridlock with the competing Democratic and Republican bills — which would have been an embarrassing failure for both parties amid the national attention focused on the VA’s troubles,” Politico reported at the time.
Trump’s VA secretary lies too:
The lie was echoed by VA Secretary Robert Wilkie, the AP reported.
Wilkie claimed that he removed previous “bad leadership” and touted new numbers claiming that wait times improved drastically since he took over.
“It’s true that a study by the medical association came out in January that found wait times at VA medical centers on average were better than the private sector,” the AP reported. “But the improvement wasn’t a ‘result’ of anything that Wilkie did: The study involved a period largely covering the Obama administration — and before Wilkie became acting VA secretary in late March 2018.”