According to a leaked memo, the Republican Study Committee has laid out a game plan to curtail the "institutional rot" at agencies like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and National Institutes of Health (NIH), should the GOP retake Congress after the November 2022 midterms.
The theme of the proposal is that the RSC sees ideological progressive "group think" as a rampant habit that squanders government money.
The RSC’s chairman, Rep. Jim Banks (R- IN), said Republicans could defund wokeness once they’ve taken back the House majority, claiming that the left calling hot-button topics such as racism, policing, and climate change as "public health issues," has led the GOP to see health authorities becoming too distracted by ideology. Banks cited executive orders from the beginning of the Biden administration are cited in the paper as proof.
Banks told the outlet: "If Congress fails to hold the Fauci clique accountable, and fails to reform public health agencies, we will be giving far-left bureaucrats a blank check to shut the country down whenever they want to. We need to send a message that the restrictions, the mandates and the school closures can never happen again."
The RSC’s message was that the concept of "public health" has become overly politicized, to the point that the RSC believes "holding partisan public health bureaucrats accountable should be a major oversight priority for House Republicans after 2022."
Both the CDC and NIH are named in the paper. It follows an April report from the US Government Accountability Office that outlined how those particular agencies, among others in the HHS, had insufficient reporting mechanisms to stop outside political interference.
The RSC calls out how the CDC has a page dedicated to politically correct "preferred terms" to dictate conversation. Here’s the plan of action Republicans have in mind for the agency:
- Refocusing the CDC on its core mission: "as a public health emergency response agency. Conservatives should reallocate resources from the Left’s priorities, including such efforts on gun violence, climate change, and tobacco. Conservatives should consider cutting funding for CDC efforts that are duplicative of efforts conducted by NIH, such as those on heart disease and tobacco."
- Require the CDC to be transparent: "with the American public about the [data] used in public health decision making to ensure its decisions are based on science and not ideology."
- Require the Director of the CDC be Senate-confirmed: "and increased oversight of political appointees at the CDC."
- Transferring appropriate CDC career staff to the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Corps: "and enacting reforms to the USPHS to bring greater accountability and structure to the CDC."
As for the NIH, the RSC highlighted how the agency "funded 257 grants on social disparities related to COVID-19, but only four on its spread" in their stated mission goal of trimming what they see as wasteful spending.
- Capping indirect costs: "could ensure such funds aren’t funneled to politically favored woke institutions. Congress could consolidate authority for indirect rate negotiations for NIH grants in a single office at the NIH and implement reporting requirements for such costs."
- Increasing transparency measures for grant funding: "to ensure such funding is geared towards basic science and not the Left’s social engineering. Such measures should include requiring organizations to specify and make public where indirect dollars flow for all extramural grants."
- Consolidate the NIH’s 27 institutes: "to enhance the agencies focus. In consolidating the institutes, conservatives should focus efforts on rooting out elements of the Left’s social agenda that have been institutionalized at NIH."
- Focusing oversight activities on ensuring political appointees at NIH are accountable and: "tasking HHS OIG with increased oversight of grant-making to protect against problematic project selection. Such policies would help ensure NIH has the capability to better adjust project solution to the needs of the moment."
- "Enacting policies to ensure American research dollars don’t go to Chinese Communist Party companies, the Russian Federation, and other adversarial nations."
Concerns surrounding political agendas meshing with public health were spotlighted earlier this year in congressional hearings at the beginning of this year. Some of the most intense questioning from Congress to Dr. Fauci entailed what the NIH knew about the EcoHealth Alliance program at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
Fauci friction died down since then, as states across the country saw a downward trend of reported COVID cases. But even so, Republicans like Senator Rand Paul have since proposed bills that would eliminate Anthony Fauci’s leadership position.
At a gathering of Republican leadership back in March, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) suggested the party also explore the possibility of impeaching President Biden. If the right-wing regains a congressional majority, Jordan would be on the House Judiciary Committee that oversees the impeachment process.
The issue of intersecting leftist politics with meritocracy is playing out at the Indiana University School of Medicine, according to a new report from Daily Caller’s Chrissy Clark. Their reporting highlights upcoming plans for the medical school to intertwine "Diversity, Equity and Inclusion" requirements as necessary for faculty to adhere to, if they seek promotion and tenure.
It’s an example that’s an extension of the prioritization towards "diversity" propped up in the research grant process, according to the RSC.