Trump Hails Ronny Jackson as an “American Hero”

He also again hinted he’d seek political revenge on Sen. Jon Tester.

President Donald Trump on Friday continued to fume over Ronny Jackson’s failed bid to become the next Veterans Affairs secretary, labeling the allegations that tanked Jackson’s nomination as false and politically motivated. He also praised Jackson, who has worked as a White House physician for 12 years, as an “American hero” for exposing what he described as maliciousness in Washington.

“I explained what happened, I explained that Washington can be a very mean place—you don’t know about that, Chancellor—a nasty place,” Trump said at a joint press conference alongside German Chancellor Angela Merkel. “The false accusations that were made about him by Sen. Tester, from a great state—I don’t think that state is going to put up with it.” (Many watching on social media remarked on how visibly uncomfortable Merkel appeared throughout Trump’s response.)

The president continued by likening Jackson’s situation to his own scandal, the ongoing Russia investigations. He said: “I’ve had it happen to me with the Russian collusion hoax. But I came into the job understanding that things happen. He didn’t.”

Since they first emerged this week, Trump has repeatedly blasted the allegations of workplace misconduct surrounding Jackson, “the Candy Man,” which include accusations of drinking on the job and improperly giving out prescription drugs, as fabricated. He claims they are the work of Tester, the top Democrat on the Senate’s Veterans Affairs committee. Neither he nor the administration has provided any evidence to support that notion.

Jackson announced his decision to withdraw his nomination Thursday, also blasting the allegations against him as “false and fabricated.” Nearly a dozen current and former colleagues were cited in a two-page memo detailing some of the most explosive allegations against Jackson.

THE TRUTH IS...

what drives Mother Jones' team of 50-plus journalists. The truth is powerful, as evidenced by how hard those with something to hide, or profit to gain, seek to discredit it. The truth, stated boldly and reported meticulously, is what draws so many readers to Mother Jones.

And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

payment methods

THE TRUTH IS...

what drives Mother Jones' team of 50-plus journalists. The truth is powerful, as evidenced by how hard those with something to hide, or profit to gain, seek to discredit it. The truth, stated boldly and reported meticulously, is what draws so many readers to Mother Jones.

And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate