Elizabeth Warren calls on ex-FDA chief to resign from Pfizer board

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren went after the former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday, calling for his resignation from pharmaceutical giant Pfizer’s board of directors.

Continue Reading Below

Warren, a leading 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, slammed Scott Gottlieb for joining Pfizer's board just two months after resigning from the agency that’s in charge of regulating the drugmaker. 

“This kind of revolving door influence-peddling smacks of corruption, and makes the American people rightly cynical and distrustful about whether high-level Trump administration officials are working for them, or for their future corporate employers,” Warren wrote in a letter addressed to Gottlieb.

Pfizer is one of the world’s biggest drugmakers and has been a target of President Trump, who slammed the company for raising drug prices.

“Pfizer & others should be ashamed that they have raised drug prices for no reason,” the president Tweeted last year. “They are merely taking advantage of the poor & others unable to defend themselves, while at the same time giving bargain basement prices to other countries in Europe & elsewhere.”

In 2018, Warren -- a fierce consumer advocate -- said that Pfizer board members received $142,500 in cash retainers, in addition to $192,500 worth of stock. She’s previously introduced legislation to prevent senior government officials from being hired by public companies for at least four years after leaving their posts.


But in a tweet on Tuesday, Gottlieb said he had a “productive relationship” with Warren and said that he would respond “promptly, directly and privately.”