HHS official who spread conspiracy theories allowed back on job

- Maret 06, 2018

Jon Cordova, the HHS principal deputy assistant secretary for administration, will formally resume his duties on Wednesday after being placed on a two-week administrative leave while leaders reviewed his use of social media to promote conspiracy theories.

“Mr. Cordova has expressed sincere and deep apology for those statements and for any harm or injury he may have caused to readers of any of his social media posts,” an HHS spokesperson told POLITICO. “While he continues to work at HHS, Mr. Cordova – along with all department employees – will be expected to demonstrate a full commitment to inclusiveness and respect for all Americans that we serve.”

Cordova, a former Trump campaign staffer, shared false stories about former President Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and others, CNN reported last month. For instance, he suggested that Cruz frequented prostitutes, and he called for a boycott on Budweiser because he said it supported "jihadis."

Although Cordova was placed on leave after the CNN story, he was repeatedly seen around the Humphrey building and at his desk, four HHS staffers told POLITICO.

Cordova has helped lead ReImagine HHS, an initiative intended to revamp staffing and structure. His office helps oversee HR policy and compliance with Equal Employment Opportunity laws.


An HHS spokesperson said the social media posts cited by CNN appear to have been created before Cordova joined HHS and that no complaints have been received about his conduct at HHS through the “usual departmental channels."

“He has acknowledged that he may have allowed the heat of the political campaign to undermine his better judgment, resulting in posted content by him that may have inadvertently offended many,” the spokesperson added.


 

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