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The boss resigned under pressure and other Veterans Affairs managers are likely on the way out. Now the challenge is to solve the problem by providing timely health care for hundreds - perhaps thousands - of waiting veterans around the country.
Even Eric Shinseki knew he had to go, President Barack Obama said Friday in announcing the resignation of his only Veterans Affairs secretary over a growing scandal involving sometimes deadly waits for care at VA hospitals.
Obama went before reporters shortly after meeting with Shinseki at the White House and said the retired Army general told him that "the VA needs new leadership" to address the widespread problems chronicled in new reports this week, adding that Shinseki "does not want to be a distraction" to fixing the situation.
"That was Ric's judgment on behalf of his fellow veterans, and I agree. We don't have time for distractions. We need to fix the problem," Obama said. Full story
We want you to weigh in: Will Shinseki’s resignation improve conditions at VA hospitals?
Vote by tweeting Yes or No using #Crossfire or comment on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.
Crossfire hosts Stephanie Cutter and Newt Gingrich debate the government's role in dictating school lunch standards with Margo Wootan and Genevieve Wood.
School Lunch Hysteria?
Gingrich questions Margo Wootan's outrage over the of healthy school lunch standards.
Newest threat ...potatoes?
Newt Gingrich is not happy that potatoes are now considered a threat under the eyes of the government. Margo Wootan debates with Genevieve Wood.
Cutter to Paltrow: please stop talking
Stephanie Cutter is outraged that Gwyneth Paltrow said she knows what it's like to be in war because of nasty online comments.
Gingrich outraged over D.C. swarm of taxes
Newt Gingrich is outraged that D.C. now has a yoga tax to add to the list.
First Lady Michelle Obama argued Tuesday that it's "unacceptable" for House Republicans to consider making major changes to the 2010 child nutrition law – a hallmark of her "Let's Move" campaign against childhood obesity.
"The last thing we can afford to do right now is play politics with our kids' health," she said. "Now is not the time to roll back everything that we have worked for. Our kids deserve so much better than that."
The first lady made her remarks at the White House before meeting with school leaders and experts on child nutrition.
Her comments represented a rare moment for the first lady, who stays far away from public disputes with Congress.
Just today, in a move that assures a further showdown with the White House and first lady Michelle Obama over school lunches, a Republican-led House committee voted down a Democratic amendment that would have allowed schools struggling to comply with nutrition standards a one-year delay.
The House Appropriations Committee voted “No” on an amendment that would have stripped the language in the agriculture appropriations bill that allows the struggling schools a one-year delay in complying with nutrition standards for school lunches. Full story
At 6:30pm ET, Margo Wootan of Center for Science in the Public Interest and Genevieve Wood of Heritage join Newt Gingrich and Stephanie Cutter for a debate.
Should government require healthier school lunches?
Vote by tweeting Bigger or Smaller using #Crossfire or comment on our Facebook post. View results below or through our Poptip results page.
Dr. Ben Carson, a renowned neurosurgeon and a popular figure among conservatives who's considering a run for president, wouldn't say whether he's qualified to be commander in chief.
Appearing on CNN's "Crossfire” on Wednesday, Carson was asked by co-host Stephanie Cutter on the left whether he thinks he has what it takes to lead the country.
"Well, let me put it this way, I'm not sure that anybody is qualified to be the commander in chief by themselves," Carson said. Full story
Ben Carson defends Nazi comparison
Dr. Ben Carson defends his recent comments in comparing Nazi Germany to the power of protest in the U.S.
President Barack Obama on Wednesday outlined a foreign policy vision of "might doing right," arguing that modern pragmatism requires both a strong military and the diplomatic tools of alliances and sanctions to exert influence and provide global leadership.
He told graduating cadets at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point that after the nation's "long season of war and divisions about how to move forward," they now would represent America with the duty "not only to protect our country, but to do what is right and just."
Under fire from the political right for what critics call diminishing U.S. global influence, Obama offered a robust defense of his foreign policy as the pragmatic and most effective expression of America's leadership role in the world.
"I believe in American exceptionalism with every fiber of my being," he said, referring to a tenet of conservative ideology.
"But what makes us exceptional is not flouting international norms and the rule of law; it's our willingness to affirm them through our actions," Obama said in arguing that true leadership involves not only having the world's most powerful military, but in doing the right thing.Full story
At 6:30pm ET, Dr. Ben Carson and former Governor Ted Strickland (D-OH) join Newt Gingrich and Stephanie Cutter for a debate.
Do you think America should play a bigger or smaller role in world affairs?
Bill Kristol calls President Obama's announcement on troop withdrawals in Afghanistan "unbelievably irresponsible." What do you think?
America's global responsibility?
S.E. Cupp asks Peter Beinart if President Obama has mishandled threats overseas.
McDonald's: I'm not lovin’ it
Van Jones is outraged McDonald's CEO said their employees make a fair and competitive wage.
With combat operations in Afghanistan ending this year, President Barack Obama announced Tuesday his plan for almost 10,000 American troops to remain in the country in 2015 if the Afghan government signs a security agreement.
"We will bring America's longest war to a responsible end," Obama said in an appearance in the White House Rose Garden.
The announcement offered something to proponents and opponents of a continued U.S. military engagement in Afghanistan after more than a decade of war - the longest in American history. Full story
At 6:30pm ET, Peter Beinart, who is a contributing editor for Atlantic Media, and Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol join S.E. Cupp and Van Jones for a debate.
Do you think President Obama’s foreign policy has been a success?
We have a trillion-dollar student debt problem. Crossfire's Van Jones wants to get that anvil off the economy's neck.
Author, documentary filmmaker, historian, Speaker of the House (1995-1999), and 2012 Republican presidential candidate
Fmr. Obama Deputy Campaign Mgr. and W.H. Sr. Adviser, founder of Precision Strategies, fmr. Sr. Adviser to Maj. Leader Reid and Sen. Kennedy
Conservative columnist for New York Daily News, contributing editor at Townhall Magazine, commentator and author
Former Special Adviser for Green Jobs under President Obama, co-founder of Rebuild the Dream, author and attorney
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