Jackson, a rear admiral in the Navy, withdrew his name from consideration to lead the VA last week amid a Senate Veterans Affairs Committee investigation into allegations that he created a “hostile work environment” and improperly distributed medication. He was also accused of “excessive drinking on the job” and crashing a government vehicle.
On Sunday, Politico reported that Jackson would not return to his old role as President Donald Trump’s personal physician, citing two White House officials. The news was later confirmed by The Washington Post and The New York Times.
It’s unclear if Jackson will remain on staff at the White House medical unit or if he’ll depart the administration.
Dr. Sean Conley, a veteran of the Navy who took over as Trump’s personal physician as Jackson pursued the VA nomination, will continue in the role.
Jackson has been a White House physician since 2006. He has denied the charges first made public by the office of Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), calling them “completely false and fabricated.”
“If they had any merit, I would not have been selected, promoted and entrusted to serve in such a sensitive and important role as physician to three presidents over the past 12 years,” Jackson said in a statement last week.
But the nomination had already drawn skepticism from some lawmakers who worried that Jackson’s lack of experience would imperil the government’s second-largest federal agency.
Tester’s office has yet to release any documents supporting the accusations against the doctor. Last Friday, the Secret Service said it had uncovered no evidence related to a specific charge that agents had intervened when Jackson allegedly tried to bother then-President Barack Obama during a 2015 overseas trip.
Trump pounced on that news during a rally on Saturday, warning Tester that he knew “things” about the senator that he “could say, too ... and if I said them, he’d never be elected again.” In a post on Twitter, Trump also called on Tester to resign:
Jackson is still up for a promotion to become a 2-star admiral. Senators will consider the allegations before awarding it, The Times reported.