Democrat Calls for Secretary Austin’s Resignation


FILE - Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaks at a virtual Ukraine Defense Contact Group (UDCG) meeting, Nov. 22, 2023, at the Pentagon in Washington. The secrecy surrounding Austin's hospitalizations due to prostate cancer surgery set off a political firestorm, launched multiple reviews and triggered calls for his ouster. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen, File)
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Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin faces growing pressure to resign after the revelation of undisclosed health issues and complications following his recent prostate cancer surgery. He continues to recover at Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland.

The controversy has sparked heated debates on Capitol Hill, with a Democrat now joining the Republican chorus of voices demanding transparency and accountability.

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby addressed the unfolding situation, admitting the lack of information surrounding Austin’s hospitalization.

“We did not know he was in the hospital until Thursday. We did not know the condition that put him in the — in the hospital at that time. We certainly didn’t know about the prostate surgery that occurred earlier in December,” Kirby stated during a press briefing Wednesday.

The growing discontent reached a tipping point when Congressman Chris Deluzio of Pennsylvania, representing portions of the Pittsburgh area, became the first Democrat to publicly call for Austin’s resignation. Deluzio, who serves on the House Armed Services Committee and is the Vice Ranking Member on the House Veterans Affairs Committee, cited a loss of trust in Austin’s leadership.

“I have lost trust in Secretary Lloyd Austin’s leadership of the Defense Department due to the lack of transparency about his recent medical treatment and its impact on the continuity of the chain of command,” he said.

“I have a solemn duty in Congress to conduct oversight of the Defense Department through my service on the House Armed Services Committee. That duty today requires me to call on Secretary Austin to resign.”

The Pentagon says Austin is in good condition and that no date has been set for his release.

Click play to listen to the AURN News report from Jamie Jackson:

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