Austin Hospitalization Drama Sparks House Move to Tighten Notification Requirements for National Security Officials

National security-related executive branch officials would have to notify the president and Congress no more than 24 hours after they are incapacitated by an emergency medical issue under a bill approved by the House on Monday that was inspired by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s secret hospitalization earlier this year.

The bill would also require the president and Congress to be notified at least 24 hours before a planned medical procedure that would prevent the official from doing their job.

“At a time when our nation is facing threats around the world, we cannot afford for those who are critical to America’s national security to disappear without explanation and clear delegation of their responsibilities,” Rep. Jen Kiggans, R-Va., the bill’s sponsor, said on the House floor.

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