Ahead of Meeting With Obama, Shinseki Apologizes for VA Scandal, Asks Congress for Help

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 10 a.m. | Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki apologized for the scandal rocking his department Friday, but he did not resign ahead of a meeting with President Barack Obama this morning.  

"I apologize," to Congress, the public and to the veterans, Shinseki said — calling the findings of systemic shortcomings in VA health care unacceptable.  

When Could the Senate Debate the VA Scandal? (Video)

(Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senators have begun to talk about legislation designed to help remedy the controversy engulfing the Department of Veterans Affairs, but it isn't immediately clear when they might have a venue for that debate.  

Senate Appropriations is scheduled to take up the fiscal 2015 Military Construction-VA spending bill Thursday, and it's expected to be among the first appropriations bills to reach the floor this year. The Military Construction-VA Appropriations Subcommittee approved the bill earlier Tuesday.  

Senate Quietly Clears Military COLA Fix After Debt Limit Suspense

(Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

After a suspenseful vote to suspend the debt limit, the atmosphere in the Senate returned to normal in time to clear a measure rescinding cuts in military pension cost-of-living adjustments from last December's budget agreement.  

The action to restore the COLAs came on a 95-3 vote that went largely unnoticed in the Capitol in the flurry of activity surrounding the surprising debt limit suspense .