Report: The White House's Vaccination Coordinator Is Stepping Down

Posted: Nov 22, 2021 7:30 AM
Report: The White House's Vaccination Coordinator Is Stepping Down

Source: AP Photo/LM Otero

White House Vaccinations Coordinator Bechara Choucair is stepping down, with Monday being his last day in the administration, according to Bloomberg.

Choucair, who was tasked with reaching the administration's 100 million vaccines in the first 100 days goal, will return to the private sector.

The Biden administration had no trouble reaching this number.

"I'm proud to announce that tomorrow, 58 days into our administration we will have met my goal of administering 100 million shots to our fellow Americans. That's weeks ahead of schedule, even with the setbacks we faced during the winter storms," Biden said on March 18. 

Later that month he updated his goal to 200 million vaccines in 100 days.

By July, however, and with the Delta variant spreading, Biden began announcing vaccine-or-test mandates, starting first with federal employees and contractors. He later removed the option to test for these workers and added a series of other vaccine mandates on private businesses with 100 or more employees and healthcare workers. The mandates affected up to 100 million Americans. 

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has since suspended the implementation and enforcement of the mandate on private businesses following legal challenges.

Nevertheless, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the administration is still moving forward.

“Let me be very clear, our message to businesses right now is to move forward with measures that will make their workplace safer and protect their work forces from COVID-19. That was our message after the first stay from the Sixth Circuit and nothing has changed,” Psaki said. “We are still heading toward the same timeline. The Department of Justice is vigorously defending the emergency temporary standard in court and we are confident in OSHA's authority."

Choucair, who previously worked as the commissioner of the Chicago Department of Public Health and at Kaiser Permanente, has been very supportive of forced vaccination efforts.

“Take United Airlines, for example. Now there are over 99% of their employees vaccinated. Tyson Foods has over 96% of their employees vaccinated. They didn’t start there. They started in the mid-50s or high-50s, so we know vaccine requirements work,” Choucair recently told “AMA COVID-19 Update.” 

The White House has not yet commented on Choucair's reported departure. 

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