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Arizona senate committee rejects Hobbs' pick for head of Department of Health Services

A panel of Arizona senators have recommended the rejection of Gov. Katie Hobbs' nominee to lead the state health department.

Republicans on the Senate Committee on Director Nominations recommended the full Senate reject the confirmation of nominee Dr. Theresa Cullen. She currently serves as the health director in Pima County.

GOP senators criticized Pima County’s policies during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as the decision to implement curfews and a vaccine mandate for county employees.

Republican Sen. Jake Hoffman, who chairs the committee, said nominees should run the agency in a way that reflects the legislature’s priorities, further highlighting the divide between the conservative body and the new Democratic governor.

However, this isn’t the end of the line for Cullen as all nominees must be confirmed or rejected by a full vote from the Senate.