Trump vaccine chief Slaoui fired from board over sexual harassment allegations
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) announced Wednesday that Moncef Slaoui, who led the Trump administration's coronavirus vaccine accelerator, was terminated from the board of directors of Galvani Bioelectronics, a GSK joint venture, following sexual harassment allegations. The company received a letter in February detailing sexual harassment and inappropriate conduct allegations against Slaoui that date back several years, to when he led GSK’s vaccine division, CEO Emma Walmsley said in an internal memo to staff. GSK enlisted an outside law firm to look into the accusations.
“The investigation of Dr. Slaoui’s conduct substantiated the allegations and is ongoing. Dr. Slaoui’s behaviours represent an abuse of his leadership position and violate our company policies, our values, and our commitment to Trust — a commitment I know is shared by all of you,” Walmsley wrote to employees.
Slaoui, who did not immediately respond to a request for comment, was chair of the Galvani Bioelectronics board of directors, a joint venture between GSK and Verily Life Sciences.
He left GSK in 2017 and worked in venture capital before the Trump administration tapped him in May 2020 to lead Operation Warp Speed, its effort to accelerate the development of coronavirus vaccines, therapies and tests to market.
When he accepted the job, Slaoui had a seat on the board of vaccine developer Moderna and owned roughly $2.4 million in Moderna shares that he sold off to lead the government venture.
The longtime pharmaceutical executive told POLITICO late last year that he would step down from the Warp Speed project after aiding its transition into Biden officials’ hands. The administration has since abandoned the Warp Speed name because of its association with Trump.
"I do not want my departure from the role to have anything to do with the new administration. I have more affinity for the new administration than the current one," Slaoui, who's a registered Democrat, said at the time. "This doesn't have to be black and white. I can continue to be available as needed."
He took on a reduced role as a consultant before departing weeks into the new administration.
In her letter to GSK staff, Walmsley — one of very few women at the top of a major pharmaceutical company — said she chose to write openly “because these issues are profoundly important to me.”
She continued: “Protecting the woman who came forward and her privacy has been a critical priority throughout this time. This will continue. I respect and admire her courage and strength. I’ve spent many nights lately putting myself in her shoes. More than anything, this simply should not have happened.”
Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions is telling associates he had no idea his Justice Department seized phone records of two top Democratic congressional critics of then-President Donald Trump. In the hours since The New York Times broke the news on Thursday that prosecutors subpoenaed Apple metadata from Reps. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Eric Swalwell (D-CA), former Attorney General Sessions has privately told people that he wasn’t aware of, nor was he briefed on, the reported data seizures while he led the Trump DOJ. This week’s revelations were a surprise to him, according to a source familiar with the matter, and another person close to Sessions.
The US justice department’s internal watchdog launched an investigation on Friday after revelations that former president Donald Trump’s administration secretly seized phone data from at least two House Democrats as part of an aggressive leaks inquiry related to the Russia investigation into Trump’s conduct.
Donald Trump called Joe Biden a “mental retard” during the 2020 election, a new book says, but was reluctant to attack him too strongly for fear the Democrats would replace him with Hillary Clinton or Michelle Obama. Biden went on to beat Trump by more than 7m in the popular vote and by 306-232 in the electoral college, a result Trump deemed a landslide when it was in his favor against Clinton in 2016.
The deadly insurrection at the US Capitol was “planned in plain sight” but intelligence failures left police officers exposed to a violent mob of Trump supporters, a Senate investigation has found. The Capitol police intelligence division had been gathering online data since December about plots to storm the building on 6 January, including messages such as: “Bring guns. It’s now or never.” But a combination of bad communications, poor planning, faulty equipment and lack of leadership meant the warnings went unheeded, allowing the insurrectionists to overrun the Capitol and disrupt certification of Joe Biden’s election victory. Five people died.