A new investigation into Seema Verma, the head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, found that the health care chief spent more than $3.5 million taxpayer dollars to build her public image.
Politico reported that among some of Verma’s questionable expenses was a $2,933 “Girl’s Night,” which was thrown in her honor and took place at a reporter’s home.
The 17-month long investigation was conducted by Democrats on the House Oversight and Reform Committee, House Energy and Commerce Committee, Senate Finance Committee, and Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee.
The probe revealed the Verma used at least $1,117 to pay for her profile in AARP’s magazine, $837 for lunch, and thousands of dollars to surround herself with at least 15 high-paid communications contractors.
CNBC reported that the committees want Verma to “personally reimburse the taxpayers for these inappropriate expenditures.”
On Thursday, “Girl’s Night” began to Twitter from spectators who were completely appalled by her behavior.
“Wow. Just wow. Spending like that while instituting rules that kick the lowest income people off Medicaid so they go without health care. Selfish. Profligate. Cruel. She really does belong in the Trump administration,” the individual tweeted.
Another person added, “Disgusting. This ‘girls night’ cost more than #Medicaid beneficiaries are allowed to have in savings and continue to receive supports & services.”
Meanwhile, the Little Lobbyists organization called on voters to do their part on election day and shift the power in Washington.
“While 1000s of our kids w/complex medical needs & disabilities are on years-long waiting lists for health care, CMS Admin’s spending millions of tax $$ to ‘polish her profile’ while preaching ‘personal responsibility’ to our families. Vote. them. all. out,” the organization wrote.
In a 53-page summary of the investigation, the Democrats concluded, “Verma and her top aides abused the federal contracting process to Administrator Verma’s benefit and wasted millions of taxpayer dollars.”
While Verma declined to comment to Politico about the investigation, Michael Caputo, a spokesperson for the health department, described the results as “another reckless drive-by election year hit job.”