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HHS Nominee's Focus on COVID-19

Xavier Becerra, President-elect Joe Biden's pick for Secretary of Health and Human Services, tells the Wall Street Journal that his main focus, if confirmed, would be the COVID-19 pandemic.

President-elect Biden announced earlier this month that he had selected Becerra, the attorney general of California, as his nominee for health secretary. At the time, the New York Times noted that the choice of Becerra was surprising, as he was thought to be in the running for attorney general.

According to the Journal, Becerra may face some challenges in the confirmation process, as he has been criticized by a number of Republican lawmakers. Depending on the outcome of the run-off Senate elections in Georgia, Becerra may need the support of Republican senators to be confirmed, it adds.

If he is, Becerra tells the Journal that would focus on mask-wearing, providing personal protective equipment, and vaccine distribution, and would have weekly meetings with President-elect Biden. "The three biggest priorities for President-elect Biden will be COVID, COVID, COVID," he tells it.