HHS Secretary Alex Azar hands in resignation letter, will stay on for the rest of Trump’s term

According to CNBC, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, in a resignation letter dated Jan. 12, indicated that he will not step down from office before the end of Trump’s term but condemned the “actions and rhetoric” after the 2020 election which he believes “threatens to tarnish” the legacy of the Trump administration. 

Azar was appointed to the position in 2017, filling the role of former HHS Secretary Tom Price. Azar has played a prominent role in the administration’s COVID-19 response.

What else did he say?

Before his letter was revealed to the public, there was speculation that Azar would resign before Trump’s term ends on Jan. 20.

“The attacks on the Capitol were an assault on our democracy and on the tradition of peaceful transitions of power that the United States first brought to the world,” Azar wrote.

But instead of throwing in the towel before Trump’s term in the White House ends, Azar vowed in his letter to stay on to ensure a smooth transition to the incoming Biden administration.

“With the pandemic raging, the continued need to deliver vaccines and therapeutics to the American people, and the imperative of ensuring a smooth transition to the Biden Administration, I have determined that it is in the best interest of the people we serve to remain as Secretary until the end of the term,” Azar wrote.

CNN’s Anderson Cooper reportedly called Azar’s resignation a “swipe” at the president. Meanwhile, CNN commentator Keith Boykin fired shots at Azar, suggesting that because of his “failed leadership” on the COVID-19 pandemic that he should have resigned months ago.

Unhappy with CNN

According to Fox News, Azar was extremely unhappy with the way CNN reported on his resignation.

The outgoing secretary also made it clear in a follow-up tweet that he was only submitting his resignation as tradition calls for every Cabinet secretary when the end of their term nears.

In his letter, Azar said being HHS secretary was the “greatest professional privilege and honor of my life,” and thanked Trump for providing him the opportunity to serve the American people.

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