President Obama will reportedly pick Bob McDonald, the former head of Procter & Gamble, to be the next secretary of veterans affairs. A West Point graduate, a veteran, and by the White House's words a “significant supporter of the U.S. Military Academy” as well as a “life member of the U.S. Army Ranger Association,” McDonald seems the unimpeachable choice to take over the troubled department.
Gen. Eric Shinseki resigned earlier this month following a far-reaching scandal involving patient waiting lists at VA hospitals, badly timed bonuses, and mismanagement of a network of 1,700 facilities that serves nearly eight million veterans.
Here's how Michael Shear characterized McDonald's bona fides.
At Procter & Gamble, Mr. McDonald oversaw more than 120,000 employees as he directed a company that had operations across the globe. Officials noted on Sunday that Mr. McDonald’s former company served more than five billion customers."
It's his work in management as an executive that should have the president's critics on the right especially pleased. House Speaker John Boehner had only kind things to say about McDonald, calling him "a good man, a veteran, and a strong leader with decades of experience in the private sector."
That didn't stop Boehner from throwing some shade at the president.
But the next VA secretary can only succeed in implementing that type of change if his boss, the president, first commits to doing whatever it takes to give our veterans the world class health care system they deserve by articulating a vision for sweeping reform. Our nation's veterans deserve nothing less."
In fact, if there's any criticism of McDonald it's this:
Bob McDonald at VA seems like an odd choice given he got the boot at P&G— Ben White (@morningmoneyben) June 29, 2014
But since when has success in a management role ever been an obstacle to high office?