After Questioning from Kirk, VA OIG Ends Subpoena of Government Watchdog Group

Decision Follows Hearing on Systemic VA Corruption and Abuse of Veterans

CHICAGO, IL – U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) applauded the acting head of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) Linda Halliday for ending a subpoena against a government watchdog group aiding whistleblowers who have exposed corruption in the VA.

The OIG’s decision was the direct result of a hearing Senator Kirk, chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, held on systemic corruption in the VA and abuse of veterans at many American VA hospitals. The subpoena was issued under the previous acting VA Inspector General, Richard Griffin, against the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) in an effort to intimidate and retaliate against medical personnel whistleblowers.

In a letter to POGO Executive Director Danielle Brian, VA Deputy Inspector General Halliday wrote that, at the July 30 hearing, “Subcommittee Chairman Mark Kirk suggested I review the VA Office of Inspector General’s (OIG) subpoena issued to the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) on May 30, 2014. I have decided not to enforce the subpoena.”

Video of Senator Kirk asking Halliday at last month’s hearing to reverse the subpoena can be viewed here. The letter from Halliday informing POGO of her decision is available here.