Dr. Francis Collins, a holdover from the Obama administration, will remain director of the National Institutes of Health, the White House announced late Tuesday.
President Trump’s show of support for the director comes even as Collins has praised congressional efforts to boost NIH funding in the face of proposed White House cuts, arguing that stability was needed to keep young scientists in the field. The White House last month proposed a massive $5.8 billion cut for next year’s NIH budget.
A group of 40 anti-abortion House Republicans had urged Trump to replace Collins. The group, led by Rep. Jim Banks of Indiana, argued in a May letter that Collins’ past support for embryonic stem cell research and comments on the moral status of cloned embryos should disqualify him from serving in an administration committed to anti-abortion policies.