Dr. Robert Califf might once again lead the U.S. Food & Drug Administration.

According to a report from The Washington Post, President Joe Biden plans on selecting Dr. Califf to be the new commissioner of the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). Califf served in that role during the final year of the Obama administration after being named deputy commissioner of FDA’s Office of Medical Products and Tobacco in early 2015. After leaving FDA, Califf returned to Duke University as a professor of cardiology. Califf, who was also educated at Duke, has worked at Duke for most of his career.

Califf was the commissioner in charge of FDA when the agency finalized its deeming regulations, marking the first serious regulations of cigars and other tobacco products in the U.S. If confirmed, he will take over as the agency enters a new chapter in its regulation of tobacco products. This past week, the agency gave FDA approval for an e-cigarette, the first time it is has ever done so, and it is expected to make decisions about the future of the regulation of premium cigars early next year.

If Califf is nominated, it puts an end to one of the odder questions surrounding executive agencies during the Biden administration. It seemed that the White House had hoped to nominate Dr. Janet Woodcock, FDA’s current acting commissioner, for the full-time role. However, key senators objected to Woodcock’s nomination over a variety of issues including her role in the opioid crisis and her relationships with pharmaceutical companies.

By law, Woodcock is only able to remain acting commissioner through Nov. 15. At that point, the White House would be forced to either nominate her for the permanent role or name a new acting commissioner. Given that Woodcock has been serving as acting commissioner since the start of the Biden administration but has not been nominated for the permanent role, it seems quite clear the White House plans to nominate someone else, a reality that was reported on in August.

If nominated, Califf will need to be confirmed by a majority vote in the U.S. Senate.

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Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.