The White House on Friday defended physician Ronny Jackson from attacks coming from the left, releasing records that dispute allegations of wrongdoing against him.
The defense follows the White House physician's decision to withdrew his nomination to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs. The White House said the records raise doubt about unsubstantiated claims from some Democratic lawmakers, who cited interviews with anonymous current and former colleagues on Jackson, that the White House physician overprescribed prescription medications, drank alcohol while on duty, and was involved in a car accident that might have involved alcohol, the Associated Press reported.
The records, including police reports, show Jackson was in three minor vehicle incidents in government vehicles during the last five years, but none involved the use of alcohol and he was not found to be at fault. In one case, a side-view mirror was clipped by a passing truck. In another incident an enraged driver in Montgomery County, Maryland, allegedly punched out Jackson's window during a morning drive to Camp David.
The White House medical unit that Jackson ran successfully passed regular controlled substance audits, according to the records for the last three years. The reviews did recommend improvements to the medical unit's handling of controlled substances, but did not find misconduct.
Separately, the Secret Service said it has no evidence to support an allegation that its personnel intervened to prevent Jackson from disturbing former President Barack Obama during a foreign trip in 2015.
In a statement dated Thursday, the Secret Service said it had conducted a "thorough review" of internal documents related to Obama's foreign trips in 2015 and interviewed people who were present. The agency said it has found "no information that would indicate the allegation is accurate" and no record of any incident involving Jackson.
CNN had reported allegations that Jackson drunkenly banged on the hotel room door of a female employee and that Secret Service personnel intervened out of concern that he would wake Obama.
The information that Jackson successfully passed regular controlled substance audits directly challenges Sen. Jon Tester's (D., Mont.) assertion that Jackson was known as the "candy man" inside the White House. Tester's office led the charge in collecting the allegations against the former VA secretary nominee.
Tester spokeswoman Marmee Banks said there would be no comment until the office knew more about the White House records.
On "Fox & Friends" Thursday, President Donald Trump defended Jackson at length, calling him an "incredible man" and said the allegations were "completely false and fabricated."
Trump also called out Tester for airing the allegations and said, "I think Jon Tester has to have a big price to pay in Montana."