Big Pharma Azar’s Terrible Week: “Benched,” “Sidelined,” Replaced with Housing Secretary at Briefing
Politico: “The White House on Wednesday also benched Azar from a coronavirus task force press briefing, the latest sign of diminished standing”
WATCH: Secretary Azar’s disastrous interview with Fox News’ Lou Dobbs
“HHS Secretary Alex Azar gets corrected after stating that coronavirus vaccine was ready in ‘three days’”
Washington, DC – Secretary Azar, Big Pharma’s top ally in the Administration, didn’t have a very good week as the spotlight remained on the Administration’s coronavirus response. Here are some of the lowlights for Azar.
Politico: White House sidelines Azar from coronavirus response
“The White House on Wednesday also benched Azar from a coronavirus task force press briefing, the latest sign of diminished standing for an official who was the face of the U.S. response to the disease just a week ago.”
“Asked why Azar didn’t attend Wednesday’s televised briefing, a Pence spokesperson said that Azar left for his office after the task force meeting, and officials wanted to make room on stage for Ben Carson, the Housing and Urban Development secretary and also a task force member.
“The health secretary has in the last week emerged as a target inside and outside the administration, as officials look to apportion blame for a U.S. outbreak that caught federal officials by surprise and has already claimed at least 11 lives.”
“Pence asked Azar not to attend Wednesday’s press conference, said two individuals with knowledge of events.”
TPM op-ed from Accountable.us’ Kyle Herrig: The Best Way To Keep Big Pharma Interests Out Of Coronavirus Response Is To Ditch Azar
Forbes: “….a bipartisan group expressed frustration at Azar’s initial request for $2.5 billion to battle the disease, a number many said was far too low.”
Bloomberg: U.S. Will Miss Coronavirus Test Rollout Goal, Senators Say.
“Earlier this week, Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Stephen Hahn told senators at a hearing that the U.S. would have the “capacity” to perform up to 1 million tests by the end of this week, a timetable reinforced by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar at a White House briefing Wednesday.”
Patients Over Pharma: New Emergency Coronavirus Bill Highlights Need For Secretary Azar To Be Fired
Politico: Azar in the crosshairs for delays in virus tests
“HHS’ slow response was traced to the secretary’s distrust of aides and fear of offending Trump…officials inside the health agency and the White House are increasingly pointing the finger at one leader: Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, who they say failed to coordinate the response, as agency chiefs waited for instructions that came too late and other deputies were largely cut out of the process.”
TPM: Azar Apologizes For Coronavirus Report Error: ‘It’s A Very Fast Moving Situation’