Although the majority of Americans believe that President Trump tried to disrupt COVID-19 recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), most still trust that the authorities offer scientifically based information, according to a health survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF).
The results of the KFF poll come after the Government Accountability Office (GAO), an independent watchdog, announced it would investigate whether the Trump administration has been obstructing the agencies’ COVID-19 response, according to Politico.
GAO will “investigate whether the CDC and FDA’s guidelines on scientific integrity and communication have been violated and whether those guidelines are being implemented to ensure scientific integrity,” the GAO wrote in a letter to Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D -Mass.) According to Politico.
In the letter, GAO stated that it would not be able to conduct an investigation for about three months.
Sen. Warren, along with Sens. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) And Patty Murray (D-Wash.) Moved the investigation based on a Politico report that administrative officials attempted to interfere with the CDC’s weekly reports on morbidity and mortality to meet the demands of the president’s optimistic message about the pandemic. The senators also cited pressure on the CDC to relax its school reopening guidelines.
In a press release, the senators called the GAO review “a good first step” to ensure that the agencies’ information is based on scientific evidence, not on the administration’s political agenda.
“Health and science professionals should be able to do their jobs to get us through crises like this pandemic without political interference, and we need to make sure the American people get fact-based information so they can make informed decisions for themselves and theirs.” Citizens can meet. ” Families amid this national public health emergency, “the statement said.
The U.S. Department of Health defended the government’s right to oversee the two health agencies, according to Politico.
According to the KFF poll, 55% of Americans believe the president is interfering with the CDC and FDA’s efforts to review and approve a coronavirus vaccine, while 54% believe he is following the guidelines and recommendations of the both authorities affected.
The KFF poll found that most Republicans don’t feel like Trump is meddling, while most Democrats believe he is and that it’s a bad thing. However, 62% of respondents fear that White House political pressure will cause the FDA to rush to approve a vaccine without making sure it’s safe.
Still, 71% of respondents from both parties continue to trust that the FDA will ensure that a vaccine is safe and effective, while 72% trust the CDC to provide guidelines and recommendations based on scientific evidence.
The survey also looked at the impact of Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis: 31% said it made them more likely to wear a mask and practice social distancing. More Democrats (44%) than Republicans (20%) said they were more likely to be socially distant, while 40% of Democrats and 20% of Republicans said they were more likely to wear a mask.
Robert Calandra is an award-winning journalist, author, and playwright. His work has been published in national and regional magazines and newspapers.