Elise Stefanik Demands Lloyd Austin Resign

[Photo Credit: By U.S. Secretary of Defense - 231112-D-TT977-1260, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=140636760]

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-New York) demanded the resignation of Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Monday, citing his failure to inform congressional leaders and administration officials about a hospital stay that spanned multiple days last week.

Austin was admitted to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Washington on January 1 due to complications from a previous operation; he even spent time in the intensive care unit, the Pentagon disclosed on Friday.

“It is shocking and absolutely unacceptable that the Department of Defense waited multiple days to notify the President, the National Security Council, and the American people that Defense Secretary Austin was hospitalized and unable to perform his duties,” Stefanik said in a recent statement.

“This concerning lack of transparency exemplifies a shocking lack of judgment and a significant national security threat. There must be full accountability beginning with the immediate resignation of Secretary Austin and those that lied for him and a Congressional investigation into this dangerous dereliction of duty,” she continued.

Until Friday, not a single individual outside the Defense Department, not even President Biden, was informed of his whereabouts; this has generated apprehension regarding the transparency of the government and the chain of command.

The Pentagon reports that as of Sunday evening, Austin continued to be admitted to the hospital.

Stefanik, a member of the Republican leadership in the House of Representatives who has frequently reiterated unfounded allegations of election fraud made by former President Trump in 2020, is not the first Republican to call for Austin’s dismissal.

Biden is reportedly not contemplating terminating Austin’s employment in spite of the controversy, according to White House national security spokesman John Kirby’s statement to media on Monday.

On Monday, a number of leaders of the House Armed Services Committee demanded explanations for the manner in which the secretary’s condition was disclosed.

[READ MORE: Court Docs Reveal Epstein Accuser Claimed He Had Secret Sex Tapes of Bill Clinton, Others]