The PJ Tatler

Say Farewell to the Ebola Czar

The Ebola Czar, whom nobody really heard from or saw during his tenure, is now no more.

A statement from President Obama:

When I asked Ron Klain last fall to become the Administration’s Ebola Response Coordinator, the apprehension and even fear of Ebola in the United States was at its peak. Likewise, there was more than a little skepticism from some corners at the selection of Ron to fulfill this function. But, the background noise notwithstanding, I chose Ron for a reason: I have known him to be nothing less than an effective, dedicated, and tireless manager and leader. And those traits have been on full display since October, as Ron has helped marshal our whole-of-government approach to tackle Ebola at the source in West Africa and to fortify our preparedness here at home. The results of that effort speak for themselves, so much so that we can now turn our focus to our ultimate goal of getting to zero cases in West Africa, which might have seemed unthinkable last fall.

As Ron finishes his tenure and returns to private life, I extend my gratitude for his service. He took on a challenge that many called insurmountable, and, in leading the team responsible for the tremendous progress, helped remind the world what makes America so exceptional.

Obama held a Wednesday event at the White House to declare success in his Ebola strategy and announced all but 100 U.S. troops dispatched to West Africa would be home by April 30.

“Today, we move into the next phase of the fight, winding down our military response while expanding our civilian response. That starts here at home, where we’re more prepared to protect Americans from infectious disease, but still have more work to do,” he said. “For as long as Ebola simmers anywhere in the world, we will have some Ebola fighting heroes who are coming back home with the disease from time to time. And that’s why we’re screening and monitoring all arrivals from affected countries.”

Klain, a lobbyist and former Vice President Al Gore’s and VP Joe Biden’s chief of staff, was named to the position in October.

The Democratic Party operative has worked as a lawyer since leaving the White House in 2011. He led the legal team fighting for Gore in the 2000 recount and was portrayed by Kevin Spacey in HBO’s Recount.