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HELP Committee Votes to Advance Surgeon General Nominee Dr. Murthy and Assistant Secretary for Health Nominee Dr. Levine

Dr. Murthy advanced out of committee by a bipartisan vote of 16-6


Dr. Levine advanced out of committee by a bipartisan vote of 13-9


(Washington, D.C.) – Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee voted 16-6 to advance the nomination of Dr. Vivek Murthy to be U.S. Surgeon General and 13-9 to advance the nomination of Dr. Rachel Levine to be Assistant Secretary for Health. Senator Patty Murray, Chair of the HELP Committee, released the following statements reiterating her strong support for the nominees and stressing the importance of getting them confirmed in order to get our nation’s COVID response on track and end the pandemic.


Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Susan Collins (R-ME), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Roger Marshall (R-KS) joined all the HELP Committee Democrats in voting for Dr. Murthy. Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Susan Collins (R-ME) joined all the HELP Committee Democrats in voting for Dr. Levine.


“Dr. Murthy is a highly experienced, crisis-tested leader who understands the public health challenges our communities are facing and will be a trusted voice on public health issues to ensure people have the information and support they need to keep themselves and their families safe. As the Biden Administration works to end this pandemic, we need all hands on deck—so I urge all my colleagues in the Senate to support Dr. Murthy’s nomination and confirm him so he can get to work.”


“Dr. Levine led Pennsylvania’s pandemic response with a commitment to transparency and science—and at our hearing she made clear that she would bring this same commitment to the Department of Health and Human Services. She’s a highly qualified nominee who is not only critical to our pandemic response but would also make history as the highest-ranking openly transgender official in the U.S. government. I urge all my Senate colleagues to support her nomination to help end this pandemic—and to get us one step closer to ensuring our government represents the people it serves.”


Senator Murray held a confirmation hearing for Dr. Murthy and Dr. Levine on February 25. During the hearing, Senator Murray stressed that Dr. Murthy and Dr. Levine are exceptionally qualified candidates and trusted public health experts who will help the Biden Administration end the pandemic by working to debunk misinformation and rumors, promote public health guidance, encourage vaccinations, inform people about vaccine safety and efficacy, and more.