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House panel opens investigation into Trump’s VA ‘Shadow Rulers’

WASHINGTON — The House Veterans’ Affairs Committee is launching an investigation into whether President Donald Trump’s country club friends had undue influence over Veterans Affairs Department policies or violated any laws.

In a letter to VA officials Friday, committee Chairman Mark Takano, D-Calif., said the department needs to turn over dozens of documents by the end of the month to clarify the role of “these individuals who have not served in the U.S. military nor U.S. government, and are not accountable to veterans and the American people.”

The move comes amid increasing tension between the department and members of Congress, and just days after President Donald Trump chastised congressional Democrats in his State of the Union address over investigations.

“If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation,” he said. “It just doesn't work that way.”

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