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St. Cloud VA Still Waiting for President Trump’s Portrait, Ask for Patience

St. Cloud VA Medical Center, photo by WJON.com's Jim Maurice
St. Cloud VA Medical Center, photo by WJON.com’s Jim Maurice

ST. CLOUD – The switchboard at the St. Cloud VA has been lighting up over the past few days. Callers are questioning why there’s no official portrait of President Trump hanging at the VA yet.

We’ve received numerous phone calls this morning, as well as yesterday, regarding the fact that there’s not a photo displayed. Some are indignant. I would tell them to check their anger.

VA Spokesman Barry Venable says they are required to display the official portrait of the President, as well as the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. But he says they can’t hang them until they get them. He says, as far as he knows, no government agency has received the official photo yet.

It’s a lengthy logistics process, beyond that I don’t know why they’re not here. I think we’re sort of on a normal timeline. Just seems that some folks are excited.

Venable says when the picture arrives it will be hung in the normal spot in the lobby of building one, which is the main entrance. He says they did remove President Obama’s portrait, as is customary, on inauguration day.

In the meantime, by direction of the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, VA facilities have been instructed to use a substitute photo to temporarily display until the White House releases an official portrait of President Trump.

Though our facilities have been following the correct protocol we realize that it is more important to display these temporary photos to demonstrate a clear chain of command and respect for our Veterans.

Meanwhile, Venable says their primary focus is on delivering great health care to veterans in a timely manner.

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