Department of Health and Human Services building. Photo: SAUL LOEB / AFP / Getty Images

The Department of Health and Human Services has placed Jon Cordova, a top agency official, on leave after posting a slew of baseless claims and conspiracy theories on social media, CNN reports. This reportedly comes in after a CNN KFile inquiry about the numerous unsubstantiated smears Cordova posted.

The backdrop: Cordova, who serves as the principal deputy assistant secretary at HHS, had posted stories about Gold Star father Khizr Khan being a "Muslim Brotherhood agent" and made claims about Texas Senator Ted Cruz being involved in a sex scandal. An agency spokesperson told CNN that Cordova “is currently on administrative leave while we look into this issue further.” Cordova served as a delegate from California at the RNC Convention who voted for Trump and worked with the Trump campaign on the communications team in the Golden State.

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20 Republican former U.S. attorneys endorse Biden, call Trump "a threat to the rule of law"

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Twenty Republican former U.S. Attorneys on Tuesday endorsed Joe Biden while saying that "President Trump's leadership is a threat to rule of law" in the U.S., the Washington Post reports.

What they're saying: In the letter, the former prosecutors criticize Trump's use of the Department of Justice, saying the president expects the DOJ to "to serve his personal and political interests."

  • "He has politicized the Justice Department, dictating its priorities along political lines and breaking down the barrier that prior administrations had maintained between political and prosecutorial decision-making," the letter says.
Updated 27 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Axios-Ipsos poll: Federal response has only gotten worse — The swing states where the pandemic is raging.
  2. Health: The coronavirus is starting to crush some hospitals — 13 states set single-day case records last week.
  3. Business: Winter coronavirus threat spurs new surge of startup activity.
  4. Media: Pandemic causes cable and satellite TV providers to lose the most subscribers ever.
  5. States: Nearly two dozen Minnesota COVID cases traced to 3 Trump campaign events.
  6. World: Unrest in Italy as restrictions grow across Europe.

Ted Cruz defends GOP's expected return to prioritizing national debt

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) told "Axios on HBO" on Monday that he wishes reining in the national debt was a higher priority for President Trump.

Why it matters: Trump pledged during the 2016 campaign to reduce the national debt and eliminate it entirely within eight years, though he also deemed himself "the king of debt" and said there were some priorities that required spending. In the fiscal year that ended in September, the deficit reached a record $3.1 trillion.