Reschenthaler Introduces Resolution to Defund WHO Until Director-General Resigns

April 7, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. Today, Congressman Guy Reschenthaler (PA-14) introduced a resolution calling on Congress to withhold funding from the World Health Organization (WHO) until Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus resigns and an international commission investigates the organization’s role in covering up the Chinese Communist Party’s failed COVID-19 response.


“The WHO helped the Chinese Communist Party hide the threat of COVID-19 from the world and now more than 10,000 Americans are dead, a number that is expected to rise dramatically in the coming weeks,” said Reschenthaler. “The United States is the largest contributor to WHO. It is not right that Americans’ hard-earned tax dollars are being used to propagate China’s lies and hide information that could have saved lives. This bill will hold the WHO accountable for their negligence and deceit.”


It has become clear that Chinese authorities covered up evidence of human-to-human transmission as early as December 2019. In addition, despite the virus having spread to multiple countries by January 22nd, WHO failed to declare a “public health emergency of international concern” until January 30th. These actions to delay and mislead had severe consequences for the world: a recent University of Southampton study suggests the number of coronavirus cases could have been reduced by 95 percent had China moved to contain the virus three weeks sooner.


Reschenthaler’s resolution expresses the sense of the House that funding should be withheld from the WHO until we know more about their role in the spread of COVID-19. The United States’ contributions make up 22 percent of the WHO’s assessed funds from member nations. In addition to the assessed funds, the United States also provides voluntary funds through congressionally appropriated global health programs and humanitarian accounts.


“Instead of working to save lives around the world, WHO stood by and downplayed the severity of the virus so as not to offend Chinese officials,” said Reschenthaler. “I hope my colleagues join me to hold WHO responsible for playing politics rather than focusing on its mission to coordinate global efforts on public health crises like the one we are currently experiencing.”


Representatives Liz Cheney (WY-AL), Scott Perry (PA-10), Fred Keller (PA-12), Brian Babin (TX-36), Paul Gosar (AZ-4), Greg Steube (FL-17), Ron Wright (TX-6), Jim Banks (IN-3), William Timmons (SC-4), Doug Collins (GA-9), Chip Roy (NY-21), Randy Weber (TX-14), Greg Murphy (NC-3), Denver Riggleman (VA-5), Michael Waltz (FL-6), Rick Crawford (AR-1), Anthony Gonzalez (OH-16), Drew Ferguson (GA-3), Jim Baird (IN-4), Matt Gaetz (FL-1), and Bill Flores (TX-17) have signed on as original cosponsors.