Controversial White House coronavirus adviser Dr Scott Atlas resigns.
Fox News first reported the news.
“I am writing to resign from my post as Special Advisor to the President of the United States,” Atlas said in a resignation letter posted on Twitter Monday evening, dated December 1 and addressed to President Donald Trump.
Atlas said he was on a 130-day detail that expires this week.
“Thank you for the honor and privilege of serving on behalf of the American people since August, during these difficult months for our nation,” he said.
He also said he wished the new administration “all the best” – one of the few explicit thanks from a Trump official regarding the power transition.
Atlas, a neuroradiologist on leave from the Hoover Institution, a conservative think tank affiliated with Stanford University, has no experience in infectious diseases.
Trump invited him to join the task force in August after seeing him on Fox News.
Like Trump, Atlas downplayed the severity of the virus, questioning the effectiveness of the masks and urging the White House to adopt a strategy of “herd immunity.”
In September, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr Robert Redfield, was overheard that Atlas was disseminating disinformation about the virus.
“Everything he says is wrong,” Redfield was heard by an NBC News reporter.
Atlas did not attend a meeting of the coronavirus task force for months, and top experts in the group, such as Dr Deborah Birx and Dr Anthony Fauci, said they did not appreciate his contribution at their meetings.
After Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced a partial shutdown order in response to the growth of the virus in the state, Atlas this month called on people to “stand up” against the measures.
Stanford University called the comments “inconsistent with the university’s approach to responding to the pandemic” and said they reflected Atlas’ personal views. A few days later, Stanford College passed a resolution condemning his “disdain for established medical knowledge.”
Atlas said his views have been adopted by top epidemiologists at major universities. He added that he recommended social distancing and wearing a mask.
In his resignation letter, Atlas sought to defend himself against his criticism.
“Like all scientists and health policy specialists, I have learned new information and synthesized the latest data from around the world, all in an effort to provide you with the best information for the greater good,” he said. -he writes.
In a statement in response to his resignation, his peers at Stanford Medical School said Monday night that “Dr. Scott Atlas’ resignation today is long overdue and underlines the triumph of science and truth. on lies and disinformation. ”