During Senate floor debate Wednesday over authorizing funds for the Department of Veterans Affairs in 18 states, the Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Bernard Sanders criticized members for jumping to conclusions over alleged misconduct at VA facilities, including in Phoenix, Ariz., which has received extensive media attention following a CNN report last week .
"I am not a lawyer, but I did learn enough in school to know that you don't find somebody guilty without assessing the evidence," the Vermont Independent said. "And frankly, just because CNN says something, doesn't always make it the case."
"What we need is a serious, independent investigation in the very serious allegations about Phoenix and any other facility within the VA, and what I have said is that I will hold hearings immediately — more than one hearing if necessary — to get to the truth of the matter regarding the VA situation in Phoenix."
Sarah Chacko and Niels Lesniewski contributed to this report.