Democrats are revolting against President Joe Biden and demanding an inspector general probe into the administration’s handling of the baby formula shortage.
The Democrats are in open revolt over the nationwide shortage and are demanding “answers.”
The Biden admin is being accused of hiding details about the baby food shortage and how the White House has dealt with it.
It emerged this week that Biden’s FDA was aware of the problems at the Abbott plant and did nothing, even after getting a whistleblower complaint.
In response, Biden sent FDA Commissioner Robert Califf to a furious Democrat-controlled Congress over the crisis.
However, he refused to answer questions about why it took the agency months to respond to the crisis.
As Slay News reported earlier, Biden’s HHS chief Xavier Becerra admitted that the administration knew the shortage was looming since “last year.”
“We have an ongoing investigation about the details of exactly what happened, from point A to point B along the way, and since it is ongoing, I can’t give extensively more details on that part of it,” Califf said during a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing.
House Appropriations Chair Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) was furious.
“How many more illnesses and deaths were caused due to the FDA slow response?” DeLauro asked.
“Why was there no reaction? It makes me question which side the FDA is on.
“Are they on the side of Abbott and industry, or are they the side of the American consumer, in this case, babies and their moms and dads?”
“You can’t hide behind an investigation,” DeLauro said.
“We need answers. We need them now.”
DeLauro later went on CNN and called for an inspector general to investigate the debacle.
On @jaketapper, I reiterated what I’ve said from the start — families across the country should not be struggling to feed their babies.
In the short term, we need to immediately boost supply. But we also have to look to long-term solutions to prevent this from happening again. pic.twitter.com/xVE3qflHC5
— Rosa DeLauro (@rosadelauro) May 19, 2022
“It’s not acceptable to say that you can’t comment on it,” Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) seethed.
“The public wants to know.
“One problem that I’ve seen over and over with the FDA, in my 10 years here, is you guys aren’t good at communicating.”
“As I’ve said, you’ve got the timeline down and you’ve got the key issues,” Califf admitted.
“I know we have an Oversight hearing next week and we’ll be prepared to go into much more detail at that point.
“As I’ve said, we could do better than we did.”
According to Politico:
As POLITICO first reported, the agency’s lag in action spans several months. FDA was told of the first infant hospitalization linked to formula made at an Abbott Nutrition plant in September.
Top agency officials were sent a detailed whistleblower document in October, which alleged that the plant, in Sturgis, Mich., had poor food safety practices and that officials there had falsified documents and intentionally hid things from FDA inspectors.
The FDA did not interview the whistleblower until December.
Three more reports of infant hospitalizations, including two deaths, were reported to FDA before the agency inspected the plant in late January, when inspectors found major food safety problems and five strains of Cronobacter sakazakii, the bacteria that had sickened the four infants, though the strains of bacteria found at the plant did not match the two cases the government was able to test.
FDA also found Cronobacter in an opened can of formula, which didn’t match the plant strains.
A sweeping recall was issued in mid-February.