Trump Fires Inspector General Christi Grimm, Watchdog Who Warned Of COVID-19 Medical Shortages
President Donald Trump is replacing a Department of Health and Human Services watchdog who reported shortages of medical supplies in hospitals during the coronavirus pandemic.
Christi Grimm, who’s been in the role of inspector general since January, will be replaced by Jason Weida according to the White House.
Grimm was a leading inspector at the inspector general’s office when it issued a report on testing delays and supply shortages in hospitals.
“Hospitals reported that they were unable to keep up with COVID-19 testing demands because they lacked complete kits and/or the individual components and supplies needed to complete tests,” the survey of 323 hospitals found. “When patient stays were extended while awaiting test results, this strained bed availability, personal protective equipment (PPE) supplies, and staffing.”
Trump responded by calling the report’s findings “wrong,” and asked the name of the inspector to be revealed because he believed it was politically motivated.
The president took to Twitter in April to criticize Grimm: “Why didn’t the I.G., who spent 8 years with the Obama Administration (Did she Report on the failed H1N1 Swine Flu debacle where 17,000 people died?), want to talk to the Admirals, Generals, V.P. & others in charge, before doing her report. Another Fake Dossier!”
Why didn’t the I.G., who spent 8 years with the Obama Administration (Did she Report on the failed H1N1 Swine Flu debacle where 17,000 people died?), want to talk to the Admirals, Generals, V.P. & others in charge, before doing her report. Another Fake Dossier!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 7, 2020
Sen. Patty Murray, a Democrat on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, said that Trump’s choice to replace Grimm “must not get through the Senate without ironclad commitments.”
“We all know the President hasn’t told people the truth about this virus or his Administration’s response, and late last night, he moved to silence an independent government official who did,” Murray said. “Anyone who demands less will be complicit in the President’s clear pattern of retaliation against those who tell the truth.”