Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, has placed a hold on President Biden’s nomination of Tanya Bradsher to serve as the deputy secretary at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), urging his colleagues to also oppose the nomination.


During a floor speech on July 18 announcing his hold, the senator claimed Bradsher – who currently serves as the chief of staff for the VA – mishandled veterans’ private information.


“Records in my possession, as well as statements from VA whistleblowers, show that Ms. Bradsher has failed to secure our veterans’ private and sensitive protected health information, personally identifiable information, and whistleblower information,” Sen. Grassley said.


The senator’s main concerns have to do with Bradsher’s oversight of the VA’s Integrated Enterprise Workflow Solution (VIEWS) system. Sen. Grassley explained that through the system, at least 1,900 VA employees can access personal information, “but without the need to view this sensitive information.”


The Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs advanced the nomination of Tanya Bradsher last week, and a full Senate vote was expected in the coming days.


However, Sen. Grassley said the committee “rushed” her nomination, “without even investigating the allegations that I brought to the committee’s attention.” 


“We shouldn’t confirm a nominee who represents business as usual and continued inattention to Congress and our veterans,” the senator said. “I urge my colleagues to vote against this nomination until we get the answers the American people deserve.”


If confirmed, Bradsher would take over for former VA Deputy Secretary Donald Remy, who stepped down from the role in April. As deputy secretary, Bradsher would oversee the agency’s Electronic Health Records Modernization (EHRM) program.

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Grace Dille
Grace Dille
Grace Dille is MeriTalk's Assistant Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.