White House frustrations grow over health chief Becerra’s handling of pandemic

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from The Washington Post,

White House officials have grown so frustrated with top health official Xavier Becerra as the pandemic rages on that they have openly mused about who might be better in the job, although political considerations have stopped them from taking steps to replace him, officials involved in the discussions said.

Top White House officials have had an uneasy relationship with Becerra, the health and human services secretary, since early in President Biden’s term. But their dissatisfaction has escalated in recent months as the omicron variant has sickened millions of Americans in a fifth pandemic wave amid confusing and sometimes conflicting messages from top health officials that brought scrutiny to Biden’s strategy, according to three senior administration officials and two outside advisers with direct knowledge of the conversations.

The frustration with Becerra comes as top White House and health officials face growing criticism for health messaging missteps, as well as controversial policies about coronavirus testing and isolation.

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