Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Denver news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Des Moines news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Minneapolis-St. Paul news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tampa Bay news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Charlotte news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Azar (L) with Redfield (R) at a January press conference. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.), chair of the select subcommittee responsible for overseeing the coronavirus crisis, has subpoenaed HHS Secretary Alex Azar and CDC director Robert Redfield to produce documents related to claims of political interference at the CDC.

Driving the news: In a letter to Azar and Redfield, Clyburn released new evidence showing that HHS and CDC officials altered 13 scientific reports between May through September, at times delaying the publication of a crucial peer-reviewed journal on the coronavirus.

  • The editor-in-chief of the CDC's "Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report," Charlotte Kent, told Congress that in a report on an outbreak in a Georgia summer camp, a CDC official instructed her to remove language that contradicted guidance to reopen schools.
  • Clyburn's letter also claims that "unprecedented efforts to influence CDC’s reports and bully its staff" occurred during a time that HHS was privately pushing "herd immunity," a strategy that experts say would likely cause widespread fatalities.

What they're saying: "The subpoenas were necessary because the Select Subcommittee’s investigation has revealed that efforts to interfere with scientific work at CDC were far more extensive and dangerous than previously known," Clyburn wrote. "HHS has made clear that it will not provide a timely and complete response to the Select Subcommittee’s requests on a voluntary basis."

Background: Earlier this month, Kent told Congress she was instructed to delete an email that showed the Trump administration wanted to change language in a previously published scientific report. Kent said she understood the directive had come from Redfield.

The other side:

“Dr. Charlotte Kent’s testimony shows there was no political interference in the MMWR process. The Administration is leading an unprecedented nationwide vaccination effort in response to a global pandemic and has been extremely cooperative with the Subcommittee – providing over 14,000 pages of documents over the last five weeks and making the Editor-in-Chief of CDC’s MMWRs, Dr. Kent, available for an interview. While the Administration is focused on vaccination shots, the Subcommittee is focused on cheap shots to create headlines and mislead the American people.”
— HHS spokesperson

Read the full letter.

Go deeper

Scammers have stolen over $130 million in coronavirus-related schemes

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Over 100,000 Americans have collectively reported roughly $132 million in fraud losses from scams related to the coronavirus and government stimulus checks since the March start of the pandemic, according to the Federal Trade Commission.

Why it matters: Coronavirus-related fraud complaints peaked in May when the IRS began sending its first round of stimulus checks. Congress recently proposed a second round of stimulus.

Jan 26, 2021 - Health

Biden admin to boost COVID vaccine delivery to states for at least 3 weeks

Vice President Harris receives her second COVID-19 vaccine dose in Bethesda, Maryland, on Jan. 26. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

The Biden administration plans to increase its COVID-19 vaccine shipments to states and tribes from 8.6 million doses per week to 10 million for at least the next three weeks, as part of an effort to vaccinate the majority of the U.S. population by the end of this summer.

Why it matters: Hospitals in states across the U.S. say they are running out of vaccines and the country's death toll is sharply rising.

AAPI leaders praise order on discrimination but say Biden needs to do more to "prioritize" community

President Biden on the left. Rep. Judy Chu on the right. Photos: Doug Mills-Pool (left) and Paul Morigi/WireImage for The Recording Academy (right) via Getty

Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) lawmakers, community organizers and advocacy groups commended President Biden's Tuesday order directing an examination of anti-Asian bias and discrimination, but pushed the administration to commit to stronger action.

Why it matters: Anti-Asian hate crimes have surged since the pandemic began, reaching more than 2,500 in August according to Stop AAPI Hate, an initiative that tracks anti-AAPI racism.