ProPublica reports VA is run by informal 'Mar-a-Lago Crowd'

Three members of President Donald Trump’s private beach club, Mar-a-Lago, are running the show at the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) despite not being government officials or veterans, according to a bombshell report by ProPublica. 

The news comes months after a story broke that Trump’s associates, who don’t officially work for the administration, were holding up a $16 billion deal to replace the electronic health records system at the VA.

The revelations come as the Trump administration has continually urged more private healthcare to be ushered into the VA.

The men identified as the “shadow leaders” of the VA include Palm Beach doctor Bruce Moskowitz, MD; Marc Sherman, a lawyer; and Marvel Entertainment Chairman Ike Perlmutter, who acts as a secret, pseudo-leader of the VA, according to ProPublica.

The involvement of the three Mar-a-Lago members in the VA has led to healthcare policy shifts, program developments and leadership changes, according to the report. However, the three are not officials at the VA or within the Trump administration, nor have they served in the U.S. military or government in any capacity.

Still, VA officials have been working with the men since President Trump’s inauguration, with department leadership flying to meet with the trio on the taxpayer’s dime. The advice offered by the “cronies” is taken as orders by VA staff, rather than advice or recommendations from outside sources, ProPublica reported.

Read the full report here.