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Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin said he worked a lot during the trip, including dealing with a media storm over substandard care at the Manch Secretary of Veterans Affairs David Shulkin, M.D., answers a question as U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan, center, and U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, right, listen during a media session at the VA Center in Manchester in August. (Mark Bolton/Union Leader)
MANCHESTER – Confronted by investigators about a European junket that included free tickets to a Wimbledon final, Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin said he worked a lot during the trip and cited the emerging media storm over substandard care at the Manchester VA Medical Center.
That’s according to a VA Inspector General, who reports that Shulkin and his wife inappropriately accepted tickets to the ladies final at Wimbledon and ate lunch at the private members dining room at Wimbledon. Investigators also determined that the nine-day, mid-July trip, which cost taxpayers $122,300, involved only 3 1/2 days of meetings, and VA workers arranged numerous sight-seeing activities in Copenhagen and London for the Shulkins.
Shulkin told USA Today on Wednesday that he regreted the mistakes.
“In retrospect I wish that I had asked more questions,” the newspaper quoted him. […]