Veterans Affairs secretary Eric Shinseki resigns, Sloan Gibson named as acting chief

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Friday that U.S. Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki resigned over a veterans healthcare delay scandal that has embarrassed the administration, explaining Shinseki did not want to be a "distraction" as the problem was fixed.

Shinseki stepped down during a meeting with the president at the White House earlier on Friday. Obama said he named Deputy Veterans Affairs Secretary Sloan Gibson to lead the agency as he looks for a permanent replacement.

(Reporting by Roberta Rampton; Editing by Susan Heavey)