Alex Azar convicts CNN of resigning
Minister of Health and Human Services Alex Azar slammed CNN Friday night after the network reported he had resigned and cited the January 6 riot as the reason for his departure.
“Unlike @ CNN-Chyron, I’m still here to serve the Americans at HHS,” wrote Azar on Twitter after the network’s report. “I believe it is my duty to help ensure a smooth transition to President-elect Biden’s team during the pandemic and I will remain secretary until January 20th.”
In a separate tweetAzar confirmed that he had only submitted a resignation letter as part of routine preparations for a change of administration.
“I submitted my letter this week, along with every other political representative, effective January 20 at 12:00 noon,” wrote Azar, referring to the date and time when President-elect Biden is to take the oath of office.
Azar also posted a copy of his resignation letter addressed to President Trump, dated Jan. 12. The first paragraph states that Azar has scheduled his departure on January 20th.
“It has been the greatest professional privilege and honor of my life to serve as secretary,” wrote Azar to the President, “and I thank you for the opportunity to serve the American people.”
Reporting on Azar’s flight schedule, CNN’s Anderson Cooper described the secretary’s reference to the Capitol uprising as a “blow to President Trump.”
The secretary’s letter refers to the Capitol uprising as an event that threatens to dwarf the performance of the Department of Health and Human Services as well as other branches of the Trump administration.
“Unfortunately, post-election actions and rhetoric, especially last week, threaten to tarnish this and other historical legacies of this government,” wrote Azar.
The secretary called on Trump to “clearly condemn all forms of violence” and not to call for an interruption to the opening events planned for next week.
The letter lists HHS ‘achievements as “an unprecedented pandemic,” to which the department responded by bringing “therapeutics and vaccines to the American people in record time” through Operation Warp Speed.
Other achievements, he writes, have been “facilitating patient-centered healthcare markets, protecting life and life, and promoting independence over reliance on our safety net programs.”
In addition, the regulatory reforms pursued by HHS have helped “save billions of dollars and millions of hours of time for healthcare providers”.
Azar also lists HHS initiatives to combat the opioid crisis and their efforts to end the spread of HIV by 2030.
The secretary said the numerous challenges HHS – an agency of approximately 85,000 employees – are facing in preparing for the change in administration was why he stated that “it is in the best interests of the people that we end up of the year as secretary serve the term. “
On Thursday, Azar released a timeline of U.S. action to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, including how the U.S. initially obtained information about the outbreak through contacts in Taiwan rather than within the Chinese government.
“The opportunity to study the virus in January would have helped the US and the world develop a scientific and data-driven response,” Azar said. “Instead we flew blind, and human-to-human transmission of the virus wasn’t officially confirmed until January 20th.”
Azar, 53, was confirmed as HHS secretary by the Senate in January 2018 after being nominated by President Trump. Azar succeeded Tom Price, who resigned after being criticized while on the job for using private planes to travel.
Azar’s previous positions included senior executive at drug maker Eli Lilly, general counsel, and later assistant secretary at HHS during the administration of George W. Bush, and early in his career as an employee of the late Supreme Court Antonin Scalia.
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