Dr. Ronny Jackson, President Donald Trump's White House physician and nominee to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, is facing allegations of prescription drug misuse, hostile work environment and drunkenness, The New York Times reports

By Tierney McAfee
April 25, 2018 07:09 PM
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Dr. Ronny Jackson, President Donald Trump‘s White House physician and nominee to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, is facing allegations of prescription drug misuse, hostile work environment and drunkenness, The New York Times reports, citing a summary compiled by the Democratic staff of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee.

According to the document, Jackson got intoxicated at a Secret Service going away party and “wrecked a government vehicle.” A nurse on his staff also alleged that Jackson wrote himself prescriptions, and when caught, asked a physician assistant to give him the medication.

Jackson told reporters at the White House on Wednesday that he had “no idea where [the allegations were] coming from” but strongly denied the car accident. “I have not wrecked a car. I can tell you that,” he said, adding: “We’re still moving ahead as planned.”

Jackson, previously a behind-the-scenes nonpartisan figure who also served President Barack Obama, first came under scrutiny — and heavy criticism — in January when the doctor gave an effusively glowing health report on the junk-food-loving Trump that seemed, to many, too good to be true.

The new summary goes on to accuse Jackson of giving a White House military office staff member “a large supply” of Percocet, causing the doctor’s own staff to “panic” over the missing drugs, the Times said. The document also alleges that Jackson “had questionable record keeping for pharmaceuticals” and regularly distributed Ambien to members of the White House staff and the media flying on overseas trips.

White House physician Dr. Ronny Jackson
Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters on Wednesday afternoon that Jackson had successfully undergone at least four background investigations, including by the F.B.I., during his time at the White House.

“None of those things have come up in the four separate background investigations that have taken place,” she said of the recent allegations. “There’s been no area of concern that was raised for Dr. Jackson specifically.”

As new allegations surfaced on Wednesday — including one charge that an intoxicated Jackson caused a late-night disturbance during an overseas trip by the Obama administration in 2015 — White House officials again came to Jackson’s defense, calling the charges “outrageous,” according to the Times.

When pressed on the allegations — which threaten to derail Jackson’s nomination as head of the Department of Veterans Affairs — Sanders said she could not comment on specific charges.

“These are new,” she said. “I can only speak to some of the personal accounts that those of us have, as well as the records that we have that are substantiated through a very detailed and thorough background investigation process.”