Report: MI Gov Whitmer Uses $155,506 in Taxpayer Funds to Buy Former Health Director’s Silence

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) reportedly paid former state health department director, Robert Gordon, over $150,000 to stay quiet about his abrupt departure.

March 1, 2021

The Detroit Newsreported Gordon, whose surprise resignation occurred in January, took home “$155,506 in a separation deal that also required the two sides to maintain confidentiality about the circumstances that led” to him leaving:

On Feb. 22, one month after Gordon resigned without explanation, he and Mark Totten, Whitmer’s chief lawyer, signed the four-page agreement. The state agreed to pay Gordon a total that represents nine months of salary and health benefits, and he released the state from any potential legal claims. The agreement is the clearest evidence yet that the split between Gordon, a central figure in the state’s response to COVID-19, and Whitmer was not amicable, and it shows that the Democratic administration used taxpayer funds to ease his departure.

Gordon and Whitmer’s aides both agreed not to discuss publicly his leaving “in the interest of protecting deliberations among government officials,” the paper reported, citing the document obtained through a freedom of information act request.

“In response to any inquiries from prospective employers, employer will state that employee voluntarily resigned,” the agreement said.


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