News   /   Politics

Trump health official apologizes for attack on CDC scientists

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Michael R. Caputo, the assistant secretary of public affairs in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

Michael R. Caputo, the assistant secretary of public affairs in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), has apologized to the HHS staff ​​​​​​over his inflammatory comments about the scientists of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), taking a 60-day leave of absence.

In a live video posted on Facebook on Sunday, Caputo claimed that the CDC has turned into a “resistance unit” against the US President Donald Trump, accusing the center's scientists of sedition.

“There are scientists who work for this government who do not want America to get well, not until after Joe Biden is president,” he said, adding that the career scientists "haven’t gotten out of their sweatpants except for meetings at coffee shops” to plot “how they’re going to attack Donald Trump.”

Caputo also suggested that supporters of the US president should "buy ammunition" ahead of the 2020 election.

"When Donald Trump refuses to stand down at the inauguration, the shooting will begin,” he stressed. “If you carry guns, buy ammunition, ladies and gentlemen, because it’s going to be hard to get.”

The video came a day after a Politico report revealed that Caputo and his top aids had tried to change the CDC's weekly reports about the coronavirus pandemic to be more compatible with Trump's views.

Meanwhile, numerous polls show that the US citizens are losing their confidence in both political officials and health agencies, something that many experts believe would dissuade the people from getting a coronavirus vaccine when it becomes available and, therefore prolonging the pandemic.

The Trump administration has been under severe criticism from the beginning of the pandemic over its poor leadership.

Recently, the Washington Post associate editor Bob Woodward has published a controversial book, "Rage," based on a series of interviews with Donald Trump, in which the author brings some quotes from the Republican president that show that he had deliberately downplayed the danger of coronavirus..

“I wanted to always play it down,” Trump told Woodward in mid March. “I still like playing it down, because I don’t want to create a panic.” 

The book also contains the remarks of several US officials, including Dr. Antony Fauci, slamming Trump for his "rudderless" leadership of the pandemic.

"His sole purpose is to get reelected," Woodward quoted Fauci, the administration's top infectious disease expert, as telling an associate.

Press TV’s website can also be accessed at the following alternate addresses:

Press TV News Roku