On Wednesday, Rep. Greg Murphy (R-NC) called for CDC director Rochelle Walensky to resign after emails were revealed indicating the CDC changed its school reopening guidelines in response to pressure from teachers unions.
“As a practicing physician, I believe that any physician who puts the influence of political organizations before the well-being of our children has violated the Hippocratic Oath and does not belong in public service,” Murphy told the Washington Free Beacon. “These actions are unconscionable, and so I am calling on Dr. Walensky to resign immediately.”
“The CDC is supposed to be occupied by scientists who do not bow to political influence,” Murphy added. “This obviously is not the case under Dr. Walensky’s leadership. As one of the most important public health officials in America, she should have had the fortitude to reject AFT’s influence in the CDC’s recommendations.”
The American Federation of Teachers, a teachers union led by Randi Weingarten, appears to have successfully pressured the CDC into editing its guidance, with the CDC adding “suggestions” from the AFT “nearly verbatim” to their reopening plan for schools, according to emails obtained by the New York Post.
“Emails show a call between Walensky and Weingarten — the former boss of New York City’s United Federation of Teachers — was arranged for Feb 7,” the New York Post reported. “The lobbying paid off. In at least two instances, language ‘suggestions’ offered by the union were adopted nearly verbatim into the final text of the CDC document.”
“With the CDC preparing to write that schools could provide in-person instruction regardless of community spread of the virus, Trautner argued for the inclusion of a line reading ‘In the event of high community-transmission results from a new variant of SARS-CoV-2, a new update of these guidelines may be necessary.’ That language appeared on page 22 of the final CDC guidance,” the Post added.
Numerous studies on the spread of COVID-19 in schools have shown that “school closures did not have a major impact on slowing the pandemic,” and that the academic costs of school closures has been about $2 trillion.
Dr. Monica Gandhi, a professor of medicine who has been extensively researching COVID-19, told the New York Post that the emails were “very, very troubling.”
“What seems strange to me here is there would be this very intimate back and forth including phone calls where this political group gets to help formulate scientific guidance for our major public health organization in the United State,” Gandhi said. “This is not how science-based guidelines should work or be put together.”
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Author: Staff Writer
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