After nearly two years as head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Dr. Scott Gottlieb has resigned. According to a report in the Washington Post, the physician notified the Trump administration earlier this morning that he would be leaving his post, effective in about a month.
According to the same report, Gottlieb is leaving in order to spend more time with his family.
Gottlieb was confirmed as commissioner of the FDA in 2017. During his brief tenure, he largely focused on youth vaping and e-cigarettes, as well as the opioid crisis. Many members of the cigar industry also viewed Gottlieb in a positive light—a potential voice of reason at the helm of the government agency that has regulatory control of all tobacco products, including cigars.
Almost a year ago, Gottlieb announced that the FDA would be reconsidering how the government agency regulates premium cigars. Cigar manufacturers, distributors and retailers appreciated that the commissioner sought comments and scientific data related to the patterns of use and the health impact of premium cigars.
Just last week, Gottlieb told a Congressional subcommittee that the FDA was still “actively engaged” in the process of determining how premium cigars should be regulated.
Before Gottlieb was confirmed as head of the FDA, he wrote an opinion piece for the New York Post criticizing the idea of the FDA regulating handmade cigars.
As of now there is no known candidate to replace Gottlieb.