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October 16th, 2014
09:20 PM ET

Pres. Obama: It "may be appropriate" to appoint Ebola czar

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama said Thursday night that it "may be appropriate" for him to appoint a czar to lead his administration's response to Ebola.

"It may make sense for us to have one person ... so that after this initial surge of activity, we can have a more regular process just to make sure that we're crossing all the T's and dotting all the I's going forward," Obama said.

First on CNN: Obama will name Ron Klain as Ebola Czar

His comments to reporters in the Oval Office came after a meeting with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Tom Frieden, Homeland Security adviser Lisa Monaco and others. Obama pointed to those two as the leaders of the U.S. response to Ebola so far.

He said they've done an "outstanding job" so far, but that with flu season coming and Homeland Security officials also involved in combatting ISIS, "they also are responsible for a whole bunch of other stuff."

Obama also said he has no "philosophical objection" to a ban on travel between West Africa and the United States - but said that doing so could make it tougher to determine whether passengers entering the United States would have recently visited the region that is at the epicenter of the Ebola outbreak.

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soundoff (One Response)
  1. Michael Hagerty

    The remarks from President Obama were reassuring especially after the past two days. From the news conference at Texas Health Presbyterian to any comments made by Dr.Friedan the blank look no answer gives no confidence that anyone is on top of the situation.
    I expect the Director to step down or just have his position subservient to a Czar and he steps down after the crisis has passed.
    The President was late to the dance but he seemed to have a firm grasp of the situation and I feel better about things moving forward.

    October 16, 2014 at 11:08 pm | Reply

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