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Senate Democrats introduce legislation to probe politicization of pandemic response

Added 09-22-20 03:57:03pm EST - “Senate Democrats on Tuesday introduced legislation that would establish a task force to investigate claims that the Trump administration politicized health agencies' response to the coronavirus pandemic.?” - Thehill.com

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Posted By TheNewsCommenter: From Thehill.com: “Senate Democrats introduce legislation to probe politicization of pandemic response”. Below is an excerpt from the article.

Senate Democrats on Tuesday introduced legislation that would establish a task force to investigate claims that the Trump administration politicized health agencies’ response to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Thirty-four Senate Democrats, led by Minority Leader Chuck SchumerChuck SchumerJacobin editor: Primarying Schumer would force him to fight Trump's SCOTUS nominee CNN's Toobin: Democrats are 'wimps' who won't 'have the guts' to add Supreme Court seats Republican senator says plans to confirm justice before election 'completely consistent with the precedent' MORE (N.Y.) and Patty MurrayPatricia (Patty) Lynn MurrayTrump health officials grilled over reports of politics in COVID-19 response CDC director pushes back on Caputo claim of 'resistance unit' at agency The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association - Pence lauds Harris as 'experienced debater'; Trump, Biden diverge over debate prep MORE (Wash.), the ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, introduced the Science and Transparency Over Politics (STOP) Act in light of a flood of claims that agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) were pressured to tailor their talking points and reports to support the White House’s rosy depiction of the government’s pandemic response.

Health and Human Services officials have notably been criticized for editing the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports, while the CDC has been panned for high-profile reversals in its advisories, including when it stopped recommending COVID-19 tests for asymptomatic people who had been exposed to an infected person only to backtrack last week.

The bill would specifically create a task force within the Pandemic Response and Accountability Committee, an independent entity created by the CARES Act earlier this year, to investigate what Democrats have said are clear examples of interference in the government’s scientific work.

“200,000 Americans have passed away from coronavirus, millions of workers have lost their jobs, families are facing enormous challenges, and the Trump administration is still pushing the president’s political priorities rather than following the science to defeat this virus,” said Schumer. “We simply cannot trust this administration to protect the American people, which is why Congress must step in.” 

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