Enlarge /. Rick Bright, head of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, is listening during a hearing of the Subcommittee on Home Inspection and Investigations on Thursday March 8, 2018. In the background Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease.
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The Trump administration is under pressure from a federal surveillance agency to reinstate the whistleblower that President Trump claims is "an angry employee trying to help Democrats win an election."
Rick Bright, an immunology expert who led the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) until he said he was forced out of his position, has reportedly received good news from the U.S. Office of Special Counsel who filed his whistleblower complaint examined.
"A federal investigative agency found & # 39; reasonable grounds to believe that the Trump administration was taking revenge on a whistleblower, Dr. Rick Bright, when he was ousted by a state research agency to combat the corona virus – and said he should be reinstated for 45 days. During the investigation, his lawyers said on Friday, "The New York Times wrote.
"Lawyers Debra S. Katz and Lisa J. Banks said in a statement that they were informed late Thursday afternoon that the Office of Special Counsel, which protects whistleblowers, has made a" threshold determination "by the Department of Health and Human Rights Human Services "violated the Whistleblower Protection Act by calling Dr. Bright removed from his position for making proprietary statements in the best interests of the American public, "the Times continued.
There is no direct confirmation from the Office of Special Counsel (OSC), which according to the NPR "cannot comment on or confirm the status of open investigations." A spokesman for Health and Human Services said the agency "disagreed with the allegations and characterizations in Dr. Bright's complaint."
The Office of Special Counsel's recommendations are not binding on their own, but the OSC can take steps that may result in Bright getting his job back. "If the special adviser has reason to believe that the proposed personnel measure is the result of a PPP (prohibited personnel practice), the OSC can ask the federal agency concerned to postpone the personnel measure. If the agency does not agree to a delay, the OSC can then merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) is making a legal residency application to delay personnel action, "its website said. Investigations can also lead to law enforcement actions.
Bright is scheduled to testify in a congressional hearing on May 14.
Bright said warnings were ignored
As we wrote this week, Bright's 89-page whistleblower complaint describes how the Trump administration's COVID-19 response was hampered by cronyism and rejection of the severity of the virus. Bright says his early warnings of the pandemic and lack of critical health care have been largely ignored and he has been referred to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in a "retaliation downgrade."
Bright also fought the government's request for hydroxychloroquine, a malaria drug that President Donald Trump repeatedly advertised as coronavirus treatment, although there was no evidence that it would be effective. Trump told reporters on Wednesday that Bright "seems like a disgruntled employee trying to help Democrats win an election," NPR said.
"" I never met him, I don't know anything about him, "Trump said, adding that he didn't think" disgruntled people "should work for his administration," NPR wrote .
Bright joined BARDA in 2010 as Head of the International Department of the Influenza Department and was named Director of BARDA by President Obama in November 2016. Bright previously worked in the biotech industry and for the CDC, where he focused on avian and human viruses.