Trump HHS spokesperson Michael Caputo deletes Twitter account after late-night rant

HHS Spokesman Michael Caputo: People Should 'Buy Ammunition'

Caputo made the reported announcement after going on a long Facebook rant in which he peddled conspiracy theories and warned that his "mental health has definitely failed".

"If you carry guns, buy ammunition, ladies and gentlemen, because it's going to be hard to get".

House Democrats are launching a probe into how Trump appointees have pressured officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to alter or delay scientific reports on the coronavirus, Politico reported on Monday. Without a shred of evidence, Caputo also accused the CDC of forming a "resistance unit" to harm the president even at the cost of worsening the Covid-19 pandemic. He added that his family had been receiving threats and that his physical health was in question.

"Secretary Azar can not meet his basic responsibilities while allowing Michael A. Caputo, a yes-man for President Trump with no scientific expertise who publicly attacked CDC scientists and privately interfered with key CDC reports, to continue serving in such an influential role".

"When Donald Trump refuses to stand down at the inauguration, the shooting will begin", Mr Caputo said.

"This weighs heavily on us and we deeply appreciate the friendship and support of President Trump as we address these matters and keep our children safe", he said.

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Caputo's status at HHS is uncertain at this point and he was already treading on thin ice at the agency before the revelations about his comments on Facebook, a second source familiar with the situation said. In the video, which has since been deleted from the platform, Caputo hints at conspiracies within the science community and on the part of Democrats to use negative information about the coronavirus pandemic as political leverage in the 2020 presidential election.

The scientists "haven't gotten out of their sweatpants except for meetings at coffee shops" to plot "how they're going to attack Donald Trump next", Caputo said.

Mr Caputo's conspiracy theory about the "resistance unit" of USA doctors and health officials closely mirrors rhetoric from the Oval Office, where Mr Trump has spouted baseless accusations of his own about a "deep state" conspiracy to prevent the rapid production of a Covid-19 vaccine.

The session left some staffers with the impression that Caputo would soon step aside as the department's assistant secretary for public affairs, the three people with knowledge of the meeting said, though they cautioned that his fate remained in flux. CNN previously reported that the contract, which was advertised over the summer to help the administration "defeat despair and inspire hope" surrounding coronavirus, according to the performance work document sent to communication firms, is valued at $250 million.

Caputo has a history of making inflammatory remarks on social media. He went on to say that the US's mounting COVID-19 death toll has affected him, telling viewers, "You are not waking up every morning and talking about dead Americans".

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