By Spy Uganda Correspondent
President Joe Biden on Friday fired the head of the Social Security Administration after the official, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump refused to resign.
The White House said the Social Security commissioner, Andrew Saul, “undermined and politicized” the agency’s benefits, among other things that warranted his firing. Saul’s deputy, David Black, who was also appointed by Trump, resigned on Friday after the White House’s request.
“Since taking office, Commissioner Saul has undermined and politicized Social Security disability benefits, terminated the agency’s telework policy that was utilized by up to 25 percent of the agency’s workforce, not repaired SSA’s relationships with relevant Federal employee unions including in the context of COVID-19 workplace safety planning, reduced due process protections for benefits appeals hearings, and taken other actions that run contrary to the mission of the agency and the President’s policy agenda,” the White House said in a statement.
Saul, 74, is a longtime Republican donor, a former vice-chairman of New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority and a wealthy businessman who turned around women’s apparel company Cache.
The president appointed Kilolo Kijakazi, who is currently the deputy commissioner for retirement and disability policy, as acting commissioner, a White House official revealed to the press.
Kijakazi previously worked as a fellow at the Urban Institute, a program officer for the Ford Foundation and a senior policy analyst for the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. A search for commissioner and deputy commissioner will be conducted.