Obama’s Indian American surgeon general comes off sidelines lamenting Trump’s ‘missing leadership’.
Former Indian American US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy came off the sidelines to endorse Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden to provide the needed leadership to combat the raging coronavirus pandemic.
He was doing so because in Trump administration’s response to the pandemic what is “missing is leadership,” he said addressing the virtual Democratic national convention on its concluding night Thursday.
Murthy, who served as surgeon general from 2014 to 2017 during the Obama administration, acknowledged his position was not political, noting “Surgeon Generals are appointed by Presidents, but our work isn’t about politics.”
“Our highest duty is to the public,” Murthy said. “Our true guide is science. Our job is to speak the truth about public health, even when it’s controversial or perceived as political,”
“So here’s the truth, our nation absolutely has what it takes to overcome the covid-19 pandemic that’s claimed tens of thousands of our loved ones,” he said. “We have the talent, resources, and technology.”
“What we’re missing is leadership,” said Murthy. “We need a leader who works with states to ensure that everyone who needs a test gets one and gets results quickly. A leader who secures a safe effective vaccine and distributes it quickly and fairly.”
“A leader who inspires us to practice distancing and wearing masks not as a political statement, but as a patriotic duty, a commitment, that we make to one another.”
“That’s why I’m here tonight. Not because of politics or for party, but because I know Joe Biden can be that leader,” said Murthy.
Recalling his association with Biden, he said, “I’ve seen who he is with no cameras around. How he sits with people in their pain and holds them in his heart.”
“How he pours over covid briefings asking smart questions. Letting science guide his way just as he did when managing the Ebola crisis.”
Striking a personal note, Murthy recalled Biden’s meeting six years ago with “my family, many of them immigrants in the nation’s capital.”
“I saw how he kneeled beside my grandmother’s wheelchair, took her hands in his and said, ‘Thank you for choosing us, the United States of America as the place to trust with your family.’”
“Tonight as a father, son, and grandson, as a doctor who swore an oath, and as an American who loves my country, I can tell you that Joe Biden is the man I trust to look out for my family, and the leader I know will heal this nation,” Murthy said.
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