The TV doctor and the former football star, both of whom Trump appointed to sports and health bodies, are Republican Senate contenders.
Two Trump-appointed members of the President’s Council on Sports, Fitness, and Nutrition have been requested to quit or be dismissed by the White House.
On Wednesday, the White House wrote letters to two Republican Senate candidates in Pennsylvania and Georgia, Dr. Mehmet Oz and former football star Herschel Walker, asking them to resign or risk termination.
“I am writing on behalf of President Biden to request your resignation as a Member of the President’s Council on Sports, Fitness, and Nutrition,” wrote Joe Biden’s assistant Gautam Raghavan. “By today’s closing of business, please submit your resignation to me.” If we do not receive your resignation by 6 p.m. tonight, your position with the council will be terminated.”
In 2018, then-President Donald Trump appointed Oz and Walker to the council. Before leaving office in December 2020, Trump reappointed them for a second two-year term.
Federal candidates are not allowed to serve on presidential boards under the Biden administration’s standards, according to a White House official.
Oz slammed the White House’s resignation request, tweeting a photo of the letter with the statement, “It’s awful that he would politicize such a vital matter as health.” Dr. [Anthony] Fauci is the doctor he should ask to quit for a variety of clear reasons.”
“Clearly, Joe Biden is unable to be in the company of anyone who does not agree with his fearmongering dictatorial one-size-fits-all Covid treatment. Oz said in a video message on Twitter, “I am proud of my service and will not retire.”
Members of the council are classified as special government employees, and they are prohibited from running for office in partisan elections while performing official government tasks, according to CNN.
Walker has yet to make a public statement regarding the resignation request.
The White House introduced Elena Delle Donne, a WNBA player, and José Andrés, a chef and philanthropist, as co-chairs of the group on Wednesday.