Senate Panel to Consider Rand Paul’s Proposal to Weaken Fauci’s Job

A Senate panel this week will consider proposals to diminish Dr. Anthony Fauci’s current job and expand accountability at the Centers for Disease and Prevention, as Republicans push for control of bureaucratic overreach they say was prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pension Committee, also known as the HELP Committee, was established in 1993. set to considerTuesday’s bill was focused on pandemic preparedness. 

One proposal by Senate Republicans—sponsored by Mike Lee of Utah and Tommy Tuberville of Alabama—would require Senate confirmation for the CDC director. Original version standalone billThis proposal was submitted last fall as part of larger, bipartisan legislation known as the PREVENT Pandemics Act

No amendment has been made to the Senate confirmation provision. 

“I don’t think there’s any doubt, it needs to be [a] confirmed position. If we’re going to allow the CDC director to put forth mandates for the entire country, and different other mandates, we need to have the best person for the job and shouldn’t just be appointed,” Tuberville told reporters last month. 

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., a member of the Senate committee considering the pandemic bill, introduced an amendment Monday that would divide Fauci’s job—director of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases—into three separate positions. 

“We’ve learned a lot over the past two years, but one lesson in particular is that no one person should be deemed ‘dictator-in-chief.’ No one person should have unilateral authority to make decisions for millions of Americans,” Paul said in a prepared statement

Each of three directorships under Paul’s proposal would head a new institute at the National Institutes of Health: Allergic Diseases; Infectious Diseases; and Immunologic Diseases. 

During several recent public hearings, Paul and Fauci disagreed about the facts regarding COVID-19. Fauci, an immunologist who’s current salary is more than $400,000Since 1984, he has led the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

“To ensure that ineffective, unscientific lockdowns and mandates are never foisted on the American people ever again, I’ve introduced this amendment to eliminate Dr. Anthony Fauci’s position as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and divide his power into three separate new institutes,” Paul said. “This will create accountability and oversight into a taxpayer-funded position that has largely abused its power, and has been responsible for many failures and misinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The Lee-Tuberville bill would amend the 1944 Public Health Service Act to require that the Senate confirm the president’s nomination of a director for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Current law only allows the president to appoint CDC director. 

Last week, Senator Murray, D-Wash., was elected Chairwoman of the Senate Committee. Richard Burr, R.N.C., was the ranking member. announcedThe PREVENT Pandemics Act. (The acronym stands as Prepare for and Response to Existing Viruses and Emerging New Threats.

The legislation includes a provision to “ensure the CDC’s accountability and leadership by requiring a Senate-confirmed CDC director and an agency-wide strategic plan.”

Murray and Burr claimed that the bill would also strengthen supply chain and government stockpiles and supply chains of medical products, improve communication and address misinformation, create an independent taskforce to conduct a comprehensive review and establish a new office for related issues in the White House.

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