After interviewing 79 witnesses and reviewing numerous documents, the Defense Department inspector general has found that Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas), when he was physician to the president, made inappropriate comments about a female subordinate and drank alcohol while on trips with the president, violating policy. CNN obtained a copy of the report on Tuesday, a day before its expected release.
Jackson, who served as the top White House doctor during the Obama and Trump administrations, was elected in November to represent Texas' 13th Congressional District, and is on a House Armed Services subcommittee. The investigation into his conduct began in 2018, and the report says that the probe was "limited in scope and unproductive" because former President Donald Trump's White House counsel demanded he be present during all interviews with White House Medical Unit employees.
The report states that 56 of the witnesses who worked with Jackson said they "personally experienced, saw, or heard about him yelling, screaming, cursing, or belittling subordinates." He was described as a "dictator," "control freak," and "crappy manager," and only 13 witnesses had anything positive to say about him, CNN reports.
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While on trips with the president, the White House physician is not allowed to drink for 24 hours before the president's arrival until two hours after the president leaves. Witnesses said they observed Jackson drinking during two overseas trips with former President Barack Obama — in Manila in 2014 and in Bariloche, Argentina, in 2016. In Manila, witnesses said Jackson was intoxicated and made lewd comments about a female subordinate, with one person stating they also spotted him "pounding" on the door to her room while saying "I need you" and "I need you to come to my room."
In a statement, Jackson told CNN the report was politically motivated, and accused Democrats of using it "to repeat and rehash untrue attacks on my integrity." He also denied "any allegation that I consumed alcohol while on duty."
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