Six Republican senators, including Sen. Ted Budd, NC, and twenty-two Republican House members, including Congressman Dan Bishop, NC-8, have sent a letter to President Joe Biden opposing Dr. Mandy Cohen, his pick to head the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Cohen led North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) from 2017-2021. She resigned in Nov. 2021. It was announced on June 1 that she would replace outgoing director Rochelle Walensky, who is stepping down at the end of this month.
In addition to Budd and Bishop, Sen. Ted Cruz and Congressman Chip Roy, both of Texas, were among those who signed the letter, expressing their opposition and urging Biden to withdraw his selection.
“Dr. Cohen is unfit for the position,” the letter states. “Throughout her career, Dr. Cohen has politicized science, disregarded civil liberties, and spread misinformation about the efficacy and necessity of COVID vaccinations and the necessity of masks, during her time as the Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. She also has a history of engaging in partisan left-wing politics.”
The letter continues by saying that Cohen was a proponent of unnecessary, unscientific COVID restrictions on school children, stating in July 2021 that, “Schools with students in K-8th grade should require all children and staff to wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Schools with students in 9th-12th grades should ensure that anyone who isn’t fully vaccinated, including students, wear a mask indoors.”
It also mentions how a Union County school district followed the science by declining to institute unscientific mask mandates and voted with an overwhelming majority to end “contact tracing” and curtail other unproven and largely hysterical quarantine policies. Cohen responded by threatening to bring legal action against the district.
“Dr. Cohen’s willingness to threaten the school district put politics over the well-being of children and is just another example of the litany of public health abuses the American people endured at the hands of bureaucrats throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” the letter states.
Budd, Bishop, and their colleagues also said, “While Dr. Cohen claims to have acted on scientific data, her account of her decision-making during the pandemic indicates that she merely arbitrarily copied her friends’ actions in similar positions of power, without considering scientific evidence or the decisions of elected officials.”
They mentioned a time she “recounted a conversation with the Secretary of Health and Human Services in Massachusetts,” the person Cohen claimed she “called the most” for advice on COVID policy, following her lead.
“I’d be like, so when are you going to think about lightening up on masks? [she’d be like] ‘Next Monday,’ and I’d be like, ‘Okay! Next Monday,” Cohen said in a video.
The group also points out that in August 2020, Dr. Cohen publicly sported a Dr. Fauci-themed cloth mask, asserting that “face coverings are one of our strongest tools to slow the spread of COVID-19.”
HERE WE GO AGAIN!! Biden’s new CDC appointment Mandy Cohen is a FAUCI FANATIC! She was one of the WORST offenders in the country pushing school closures, masks, and LOCKDOWNS. She should NEVER work in public health EVER AGAIN!! pic.twitter.com/RhN5nlXoj8— Ronny Jackson (@RonnyJacksonTX) June 7, 2023
“This was despite scientific data showing that face coverings largely fail to stop the spread of COVID-19, including experts finding that “we continue to conclude that cloth masks and face coverings are likely to have limited impact on lowering COVID-19 transmission,” they continued.
They also say that even though she was called to serve in a nonpartisan agency, “Dr. Cohen has an extensive history of publicly campaigning for Democrats and supporting radical, left-wing policies.”
They call out that in 2009, she served as the National Outreach Director for the group “Doctors for Obama,” later known as “Doctors for America,” a partisan political association that not only campaigned for Obama’s presidency but they say also endorsed an unconstitutional ban on semi-automatic rifles and lobbied to classify climate change as a “public health crisis.”
Lawmakers also said that Cohen participated “in the misleading “White Coat Rally” at the White House supporting Obamacare as a tense debate raged and as recently as August of 2022 hosted fundraisers for Democrats running for office.”
“Given her strong affiliation with the Democrat Party and the COVID-19 lockdowns, it will be difficult for the American people to trust Dr. Cohen to run the CDC as a nonpartisan actor who makes objective decisions rooted in scientific data, and not in political expediency,” they concluded. “Therefore, we urge you to reverse course on Dr. Cohen’s reported appointment to the Director of the CDC.”
Washington lawmakers aren’t alone in their disdain for Cohen.
North Carolina State Treasurer Dale Folwell, who is also a Republican candidate for the 2024 governor’s race, tweeted on June 2, “Pray for our country. As a member of the NC Council of State, my observation is that the actions of Dr. Mandy Cohen during Covid resulted in more disease, death, poverty, and illiteracy. As NC Governor, I would be hard-pressed to ever follow her lead at CDC if chosen by the POTUS.”