Michael Caputo Will Resign Position, Citing “Mental Health” Break
Michael Caputo, a former member of the 2016 Trump Campaign and the Acting Head of the Department of Health and Human Services, is apparently stepping down from his position to focus on his mental health, according to several of his staffers.
Caputo told staffers that his series of false accusations on Facebook Live this weekend — which included unfounded allegations that the Centers for Disease Control was harboring a “resistance unit” — reflected poorly on HHS’ communications office. He blamed his recent behavior on a combination of physical health issues and the toll of fielding death threats against his family. Caputo also acknowledged that he had never read one of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports, despite his team’s ongoing efforts to try to edit those documents. Caputo also lashed out at CDC scientists whom he suspects of “conspiring against the White House”, and later told the New York Times that politically motivated scientists “are all going to hell.”
Caputo, who has deleted his personal Twitter account, has been at the center of multiple episodes of political meddling regarding the HHS Covid-19 response, including reports that he and top adviser Paul Alexander tried to influence key CDC scientific bulletins. Alexander, a personal friend of Caputo who was hired in the spring to be his science adviser, also pushed infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci to downplay the virus’ risk to children.
MSNBC host Chris Hayes devoted an extensive amount of his show Monday night to Caputo and his many controversial moments in the Trump Administration. Caputo told his staff that he is scheduled to meet with HHS Secretary Alex Azar later Tuesday, the people with knowledge of the meeting said. He concluded the gathering by encouraging his staff to “listen to the Grateful Dead.”