‘Bloated Bureaucracy’: Omnibus Spending Bill Creates New ‘Pandemic Czar’ Office In White House

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Dylan Housman Deputy News Editor
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The omnibus spending bill soon to be pushed through Congress to President Joe Biden’s desk includes the creation of a new “pandemic czar” in the White House.

Section 2104 of the government funding bill establishes an Office of Pandemic Preparedness and Response Policy in the Executive Office of the President. The director of the new office will be tasked with advising the president on pandemic preparedness and management of biological national security threats.

The director of the office will also oversee and coordinate federal pandemic responses in conjunction with the president and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Republican North Carolina Rep. Dan Bishop first unearthed the provision of the bill which created the office, including it in a list of spending measures he considers to be wasteful or counterproductive.

“The bill creates a pandemic czar, adding to our already bloated bureaucracy and giving the gov’t even more avenues to stifle civil liberties in the name of ‘public health,'” Bishop tweeted. (RELATED: ‘Science Fiction’: Scientists Say Gain-Of-Function Research Has Never Actually Provided Real-World Benefits)

It is unclear how the new “pandemic czar” would differ in responsibility from roles that already exist within the White House and HHS. President Joe Biden has relied heavily on his White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator, a position currently held by Dr. Ashish Jha, as well as HHS officials and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci during the COVID-19 pandemic.