Trump: 'Remove Federal Employees Who Undermine the Public Trust or Fail the American People'

By Susan Jones | January 31, 2018 | 4:52am EST
President Donald Trump prepares to deliver his State of the Union address on Jan. 30, 2018. (Photo: Screen grab/C-SPAN)

( - President Donald Trump says his Cabinet secretaries should be able to fire federal workers who "undermine the public trust or fail the American people."

He made the comment in connection with the Veterans Affairs Administration, while discussing "what kind of future we are going to have and what kind of nation we are going to be."

Last year, the Congress passed, and I signed, the landmark VA Accountability Act. Since its passage, my Administration has already removed more than 1,500 VA employees who failed to give our veterans the care they deserve -- and we are hiring talented people who love our vets as much as we do.

And I will not stop until our veterans are properly taken care of, which has been my promise to them from the very beginning of this great journey.

All Americans deserve accountability and respect -- and that is what we are giving to our wonderful heroes, our veterans. Thank you. So tonight, I call on the Congress to empower every Cabinet Secretary with the authority to reward good workers -- and to remove Federal employees who undermine the public trust or fail the American people.

Trump prefaced his discussion of veterans by introducing Preston Sharp, a 12-year-old boy from Redding, California, who launched a project to put American flags on veterans' graves.


"Young patriots like Preston teach all of us about our civic duty as Americans. Preston's reverence for those who have served our nation reminds us why we salute our flag, why we put our hands on our hearts for the pledge of allegiance, and why we proudly stand for the national anthem.

"Americans love their country. And they deserve a government that shows them the same love and loyalty in return."

Trump said he has spent the last year trying to "restore the bonds of trust between our citizens and their government."

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