Biden Administration

Biden's Choice To Head Health and Human Services Is a Lawsuit-Happy Government Nanny

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra loves to tell people what they can and cannot do with their bodies.


President-elect Joe Biden has selected a California big-government authoritarian nanny state fan to run the Department of Health and Human Services, a warning sign for anybody who wishes to manage his own medical affairs and life choices.

On Sunday, multiple outlets reported that California Attorney General Xavier Becerra was being tapped to lead the agency. The Washington Post diplomatically described Becerra as an "unorthodox" choice. He was a member of Congress before becoming attorney general. He does not have a background in health management. He has degrees in economics and law.

Becerra, though, does have a lengthy history of believing that the power of government is the solution to all that ails you, whether you like it or not. He's a big believer in "Medicare for All," a complete government takeover of medical coverage via single-payer health care. Biden differentiated himself from other presidential candidates by resisting the call to nationalize health insurance. Becerra's nomination will most likely give fuel to anybody arguing that the Democratic Party is being pulled leftward, but he has said that he would support preserving and bolstering the Affordable Care Act, which is Biden's plan.

Becerra is probably best known to anybody outside of California for the state's many, many lawsuits against President Donald Trump's administration—more than 100 of them—for everything from changes in policy on immigration, to environmental issues, to, yes, the administration's attacks on the Affordable Care Act.

Certainly, a number of those lawsuits are about protecting the rights of people in California, but others were actually to stop the Trump administration from deregulating and reducing the power and scope of the federal government. Becerra fought to protect net neutrality rules that were overturned by the Federal Communications Commission. He fought the State Department when it loosened rules to allow for 3D-printed guns.

His record within the state of California shows that Becerra is very happy to use the nanny state power of government to control what you do with your body and property. In November, his office filed a brief in support of a California bill banning the sales of flavored tobacco. Even though California has legalized marijuana farming and consumption, his office still brags about crackdowns on illegal grow operations against those who try to bypass the state's extremely oppressive and expensive regulations. He supported and fought to force companies like Uber and Lyft to classify their freelance drivers as employees, even against the workers' own desires, and even if it resulted in the loss of thousands of jobs. He was thwarted by the passage of Proposition 22 by voters in November. And he shares his predecessor Kamala Harris's fondness of conflating prostitution busts with fighting alleged nonconsensual "sex trafficking."

But one of Becerra's dumbest brags provides the best insight into how he might run America's largest health agency. In 2017, Becerra's office won a $300,000 legal settlement from Gatorade because of a mobile game that he argued slandered the good name of water. Gatorade had distributed a free mobile game featuring sprinter Usain Bolt. As part of the game, players were encouraged to run through Gatorade logos and avoid patches of water. Becerra actually accused the company of engaging in "false advertising" and trying to convince impressionable children and teens that water is bad for them. This is how stupid Becerra thinks people are.

It seems like such a little and petty thing, and it is. That's the problem. It is an indication of a person who has very little respect for people's individual health choices, other than for abortion. He's very pro-choice and his office has consistently taken legal actions to defend abortion access, even supporting challenges against anti-abortion regulations in other states. Beyond abortion, though, Becerra's record is one with very little respect for individual life choices when government nannies think they know better. And worse, he sees the courts as a proper mechanism for controlling those choices with arrests or fines and penalties.

NEXT: A Federal Judge in Michigan Says Sidney Powell's Election Fraud Claims Are 'Nothing but Speculation and Conjecture'

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. But at least Biden isn’t Trump.

    1. At least Biden won’t be running literal concentration camps or putting kids in cages.


      1. According to progressives, free range children are overrated. Look at how they call the cops of one is at a park without a leash.

        1. Dirty secret. Progressives want to put their own white kids in cages, but let those little brown kids run free. How else are they gonna learn yardwork and how to make beds?

          1. I quit working at shop rite and now I make $65-85 per/h. How? I’m working online! My work didn’t exactly make me happy so I decided to take a chance on something new… after 4 years it was so hard to quit my day job but now I couldn’t be happier. Here’s what I do… USA ONLINE JOBS

      2. Yeah, Obama was so much classier when he put kids in cages.

        1. “TRUMP, on separating children from adults at the Mexican border: “You know, under President Obama you had separation. I was the one that ended it.” — interview broadcast Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

          TRUMP: “When I became president, President Obama had a separation policy. I didn’t have it. He had it. I brought the families together. I’m the one that brought ‘em together. Now, I said something when I did that. I’m the one that put people together. … They separated. I put ‘em together.’ — interview with Telemundo broadcast Thursday.

          JOSE DIAZ-BALART, interviewer: “You did not.”

          THE FACTS: Trump is not telling the truth. The separation of thousands of migrant children from their parents resulted from his “zero tolerance” policy. Obama had no such policy. After a public outcry and a court order, Trump generally ceased the practice and reunited families his policy had driven apart.

          Zero tolerance meant that U.S. authorities would criminally prosecute all adults caught crossing into the U.S. illegally. Doing so meant detention for adults and the removal of their children while their parents were in custody. During the Obama administration, such family separations were the exception. They became the practice under Trump’s policy, which he suspended a year ago.

          Before Trump’s zero-tolerance policy, migrant families caught illegally entering the U.S. were usually referred for civil deportation proceedings, not requiring separation, unless they were known to have a criminal record. Then and now, immigration officials may take a child from a parent in certain cases, such as serious criminal charges against a parent, concerns over the health and welfare of a child or medical concerns”

          The one thing they got wrong was the reunification of families. It was probably presumed at the time of the writing of that article that the family would be reunited. No one foresaw the gross incompetence required to simply misplace children and parents. The latest articles on the matter, from this October, record 550 some children who have been made orphans from Trump’s policy.

          1. Hey look, it’s lefty “I’m not a lefty” DOL jumping in to defend his favorite politician, Obama!

            1. Funny how Pedo Jeffy always attacks Trump, and always defends Biden. He’s also tubby.

          2. Seriously. The coyotes use those children as shields to get into the country. 550 children were then abandoned, and no one would claim them no matter what the US did. Obama and Trump both had the same problem: criminals using children as pawns or for human trafficking. Guess what? That’s still going on, and it’s going to go on under Biden, only at a far greater pace, because he’s a senile moron who likely thinks a coyote is a small relative of the wolf. And don’t forget: OPEN BORDERS. What could wrong? If you find a nice, wealthy country with free education, and great, free healthcare, and sanctuary cities, and lots of opportunities that also has open borders so I can move there without a dang visa and not pay taxes can you let me know? Cause I’d like to leave while the leaving is good.

          3. “…The one thing they got wrong was the reunification of families…”

            Hey, steaming pile of lefty shit, please tell us how you know those kids were part of the ‘family’ with which they arrived.

      3. Do you mean the same concentration camps and the same cages that Obama put border-crossers in.

        I have a more expansive view about who should be allowed to immigrate to the USA than either Trump or Obama but the law is the law. If current law says you are not eligible for legal residence in the USA you are going to be treated in the ways that current law prescribes.

        The fact that I don’t like something has nothing to do with who is doing that something and the same things were being done by the Obama Administration.

        I know you are a joke commenter but sometimes it’s time to call out a joke as not funny.

        1. But he’s not doing it to be funny, except by engaging in sarcasm so incredibly dry that it rips the moisture from you and leaves your lips in a rictus smile.

          Because he’s parodying people who *actually think what he says*.

      4. Biden’s Choice To Head Health and Human Services Is a Lawsuit-Happy Government Nanny

        The entire platform of the Democrats is that of a government nanny.

      5. You’ll never know after Feb 2021, when the masthead of the Washigton Post changes from “Democracy dies in darkness” to “Ignorance is Strength”.

        All we’ll know about government malfeasance is that the MSM will go back to suppressing coverage of it, as opposed to the strange combination of emphasis and fabrication that we’ve been witnessing from CNN/NYT/WaPo over the last 4 years.

        While you’re missing Obama, don’t forget that the “kids in cages” photo that sparked so much outage was shot in 2014, but nobody would publish it until 2017 when the attitude about stories that would reflect badly on the current administration took a sudden 180.

        1. Or, aspirationally, “Liberty dies, with thunderous applause”

          1. Wasn’t that their masthead for the Obama era?

    2. Trump could still mean tweet. More will be needed to stop him.

      1. Don’t worry Twitter is on it.

      2. I’m sure they’ll be trying to put him in prison for something or other.

    3. Wait until Biden isn’t the winner.

      unreason will unleash tirades for days.

      1. You’re still holding on to that pipe dream? I agree that shenanigans occurred, but local politicians and a compliant media successfully covered it up. What’s Trump’s path to victory, now?

        1. Martial law? A civil,war? I value my freedom far more than the lives of thieving democrats.

          1. Those things are also unlikely to lead to more freedom. You really think that democrats are the only authoritarian opportunists?

            1. Of course not. Plenty of bad republicans too, not to mention potential Negans and Governors out here. I’m willing to take my chances as opposed to the ‘1984’ dystopia that the democrats will force on us.

        2. What’s Trump’s path to victory, now?

          I don't know. Assassination.

    4. And this isn’t a Trump appointee!
      That’s all that counts.

    5. That is hardly a recommendation.

  2. My body my choice?

    1. That’s only for abortion

      1. What if I identify as a uterus?

    2. Nothing says individual freedom like being murdered right?

      1. Come on now, you know as adults of consenting age we do not know what is best for us. We NEED the government to tell us. (sarc)

    3. Correction:

      Your body, his choice.

  3. “loves to tell people what they can and cannot do with their bodies”

    As long as he’s pro-choice when it comes to access to abortion care, I’ll tolerate minor deviations from libertarian dogma.


    1. Abortion above Open Borders? What kind of wishy-washy guy are you?

      1. The birth canal is an open border, but only going one way. Just like the US/Mexico border.

      2. I agree. This is really hurting OBL’s brand.

  4. If there is a Medicare for all I will instantly start treating all people in the medical industry as the slave property they are.

    1. Do it quick, before there’s fewer people in the medical industry.

      1. There’s already fewer people in the medical industry. So…

        1. No worries. Once the Department of Racial Equity starts handing out MDs, we will have plenty of “doctors”.

          1. Jordan Peterson is a snake-oil salesman.

            Learn to code you useless cunts.

            1. I thought coding was one of those jobs Americans will not do.

              Apparently, lawyering is one of the few we will do. Odd.

            2. Have you considered lithium? Or ECT?

            3. Really gets under your skin, don’t he?

              I have the Twelve Rules of Life and have read it twice; which is 2 X more than you’ve read it. Try reading it and then spell out exactly what it is that bothers you about it, you know, from a more informed perspective.

              Or is it like guns? You just can’t stoop to actually learning about things and persons you like to criticize.

  5. Still no remorse from the nonlibertarians at Reason who trashed Trump for the past four years, and who campaigned for Biden for the past eight months (as long as Koch made billions from the election).

    1. Nope, they’re going to shamelessly refuse to admit any connection between that trashing, and the horrible things the Biden administration ends up doing.

      1. But PRAVDA gets the good potato rations, the russets without black rot throughout


      Several Reason contributors voted for Biden as the “lesser evil” wonder how many would like to keep making that argument.

  6. Do you seriously believe that we care now? After months spent trashing Trump you want some consideration now on Biden’s choices.

    Taken in total the Biden admin is a 1000 times worse than anything Trump could do. My guess is we’ll get a decade of reason Koch whining about this assuming of course you don’t get cancelled by your hosting service by then.

  7. This is how stupid Becerra every politician and bureaucrat thinks people are.

    fixed it

    1. That’s the problem. It is an indication of a person who has very little respect for people’s individual health choices,

      well… duh. He works in government.

    2. His take on how stupid people can be is probably colored by having campaigned among CA voters for so long.

      If most of your experience is talking to the kind of people who would elect him to positions of authority, it’d be hard not to come to the conclusion that people will generally buy into anything without needing much more than some fancy graphics and a celebrity endorsement.

  8. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra loves to tell people what they can and cannot do with their bodies.

    Isn’t that the main qualification to be the Secretary of Health and Human Services?

    1. Isn’t that the main qualification to be the Secretary of Health and Human Services?

      Not for Joe Biden it isn’t, it’s that Becarra is Latino and checks a box on his diversity Bingo card. I’m honestly surprised he didn’t go for that Pennsylvania health department head who’s transgendered. I have no idea where he’s going to fit him/her in now, but given that that’s the highest-profile trans in government he has to hire him/her for something.

      1. I’m honestly surprised he didn’t go for that Pennsylvania health department head who’s transgendered

        Obviously Joe’s a moderate. Duh.

  9. President-elect Joe Biden has selected a … big-government authoritarian nanny state fan to run the Department of …

    You should probably put that in .txt document somewhere handy. Something tells me you’re going to be needing it a lot.

  10. Let’s not mince words. this guy is a piece of shit.

    1. You are being unkind to shit.

      1. Yeah. Shit is useful.

  11. CA machine Democrat Becerra is a perfect choice for Biden’s cabinet. Now that he’s out of the running, the Bay Area can reliably excrete another poster child for term limits to take Kamala’s senate seat.

    1. God help us if Newsom picks Kevin DeLeon. The year he was opposing DiFi in the general election was one of the most terrifying ballots I’ve ever seen, even in California.

      I’d be glad to see Becerra leaving his post in Sacramento if I wasn’t so certain that his replacement will be vetted by the same hive mind that he’s plugged into.

  12. Biden’s Choice To Head Health and Human Services Is a Lawsuit-Happy Government Nanny

    Does anyone have a shocked face I can borrow? I’ve used mine so many times this year that I had to send it back for repairs.

    1. I wore mine out.

  13. Becerra is probably best known to anybody outside of California for the state’s many, many lawsuits against President Donald Trump’s administration

    Funny, I would think he would be best known for his prosecution of the guys who took the undercover videos at Planned Parenthood. Well, at least among people who don’t get all their news from Reason, who apparently found this story to be too local to bother covering.

    1. That may have been a political prosecution of the press, but it wasn’t the right sort of press so it doesn’t count.

    2. ACTUALLY, he is most known outside of California as the name attached to half a dozen gun rights cases winding their way through the federal courts right now.

      1. This is true, he is an idiot with an agenda and a hatred for civil liberties.

  14. What the hell else would you expect from the biden/HARRIS administration? More to come, much much more.

  15. You’re responsible for this communist coup d’etat. Way to go LoLibertarians!

    1. Boy, who knew libertarians were so influential and powerful.

    2. Way to go to all the republicans who could have voted libertarian. It’s their damn fault.

  16. lucky for us he’ll never get to run HHS

  17. Both. sides.

  18. Are we forgetting that leftists are insisting that gun violence is a HEALTH issue in America? Further, this guy continues to be at the front line of draconian gun laws? Put two and two together, this pick is about furthering THAT agenda item, not COVID-19, and not ACA.

    1. Won’t matter. Gun laws are absolutely in no danger. It is the least of our worries when it comes to what the crazy left wants to do.

      [Amy Coney Barrett nods in agreement]

      1. Amy won’t be able to do squat about Operation Chokepoint II. Which will target much more than just firearms transactions.

        Reason authors will no doubt do some serious chin tugging.

        1. But hey, look on the bright side. It will be the epitome of libertarianism when marijuana is placed under the auspices of the BATFE.

        2. Only ENB, and only if it once again targets sex workers.

  19. Fuck you, Reason. I’m sure you’re all shocked (just stunned and shocked) at the corrupt swamp creaturescabinet picks. Congratulations, you helped every day (for four years) to create the TDS dumpster fire that helped elect his global central planning handlers. Come out of your safe space, no mean tweet trigger from these totalitarians. Punishment will be quick and swift

    1. *mostly peaceful and swift*

      1. but intensifying

  20. “This is how stupid Becerra thinks people are.”

    To be honest, that is also how stupid I think people are. The difference is that I don’t want to fix stupid.

    1. You don’t want to fix stupid because stupid keeps lurching at culture war shiny objects while taxes for corporations get cut under their nose?

      That’s why republicans don’t want to fix stupid. Was wondering if you felt the same, or if you prefer the world’s biggest nuclear power to be full of morons for some other reason.

      1. GRID

        Get used to it. And a re-constitutionalized SCOTUS ruling against everything you think you want.

  21. Paying taxes is doing something with your body. We all know who tells you to do that.

  22. All that libertarians want to do, at least the Reason variety, is bitch about government. Under the President Harris/Figurehead Biden/Apparatchik administration there is going to be a lot more government to bitch about, so there is a shitload more stuff for libertarians to get paid for writing about.

    What’s not to like?

    1. Reason authors are bathhouse bottoms who like to complain about the cold tile and gritty lube.

      But secretly like it.

      1. Or Tony.

  23. Foreseeable consequences are not unintended consequences.

    Own it Reason.

  24. He’s a big believer in “Medicare for All,” a complete government takeover of medical coverage via single-payer health care

    Since he is a “Lawsuit-Happy Government Nanny” he will apparently be ready for the lawsuits that the grievance industry will start with a “Medicare for All” plan that includes all of the denial of service and/or waiting lists that go with some government health plans and excludes all private options.

    At least Canadians (the main example of “no private options”) with enough money to seek treatment in the USA or other destinations and Brits, Aussies and Kiwis have “private options” in insurance and treatment but where will Americans go?

    1. Of course, the other thing that occurs to me is that Coal Minin’ Joe’s (the biggest “working class phony ever”) “Medicare for All” plan will contain none of the “cost containment” element that “public plans” all over the world have, in which case it will become within a few years a fiscal disaster and God Almighty himself only knows how “we” are going to deal with that: except as noted above with lawsuits from the aggrieved interests that find themselves left out.

      I will put myself on record here that I believe that some kind of “public option” for basic primary healthcare for those “at the bottom of society” funded out of general revenues is a simple political reality and will have to be adopted at either the state or federal level. At this point, I don’t believe that public opinion is ready to assign the kind of decisions about who “gets costly treatments” and “lives or dies” to the kinds of bureaucrats that make these kinds of decisions in other countries.

      At this point reread my first paragraph above. Fiscal disaster lies ahead for Joe Biden and any plan he proposes that promises delivery of all state of the art advanced medical treatment to all comers without any restrictions.

      1. And, believe me, “delivery of all state of the art advanced medical treatment to all comers without any restrictions” is exactly what the American public is expecting. Oh, dental and vision coverage as well*. 🙂

        *Just so you know, very few plans in the world contain those things; see, for example, Canada.

        Oh, as well, check if you can how many countries pay for birth control and abortions on demand.

    2. There is some private medical care in Canada.

      Rand Paul went to one such institution. Shouldice in Ontario which specializes in hernia repair. He had an unusual hernia from his well known injury.

      1. Yes, there is private medical care in Canada. Most doctors are private practitioners. They treat patients and are then paid by Medicare according to a schedule of fees for services.

        The difference is that residents of Canada are not allowed to pay out of pocket for services that are covered by Medicare. Likewise doctors cannot charge patients who are covered by Medicare (ie pretty much all residents of Canada), they can only accept reimbursement from Medicare. Rand Paul could pay for his treatment in Ontario because he is not a resident of Canada and is thus not covered by Canadian Medicare. Residents of Ontario do not have the same option.

        Now there are an increasing number of services that are exempt from these restrictions and Canadians can pay out of pocket for non-covered services eg, most cosmetic surgeries*.

        While Medicare is mandated by federal law, it is the provinces that actually carry out its requirements so rules may differ depending on the province. There are a certain number of procedures that the federal law requires to be covered. Some provinces are more generous than others.

        *Reconstructive plastic surgery is generally covered as are some cosmetic procedures if they are deemed “necessary for a good quality of life”. If you just want to look good, it’s on you.

    3. There won’t be any successful lawsuits against Medicare for All. It’sa government program. It covers whatever it covers, and if you don’t like the service you’re getting, you can go eff yourself.

      1. Nobody’s requiring you to use taxpayer money for your medical issues. Fly off to one of the many paradises with no public healthcare. Oh wait everyone has public healthcare.

      2. Lawsuits do not need to be successful to be a nuisance and costly to all parties involved.

  25. Becerra is a far-left hack quite irrational and bigoted to the point of fanaticism harmful to the public. His obsessive and unending aggression against the Little Sisters of the Poor is malicious and monomaniacal. He’s an insidious person.

  26. Elections have consequences. This is only going to get worse. But it will all be done with the right decorum, which is what really matters, right Reason?

  27. What did you think was going to happen?

    This is looking like a really ugly government.

    Pray Trump manages to get back in there.

  28. The sculpture has its roots in prehistoric civilizations, undergoing numerous changes over time and evolving simultaneously with society. During this time, the sculpture has played several roles in people’s lives. It believed that, in the beginning, sculptures had a magical role.

    From time immemorial, the sculpture has been considered a means of artistic expression, its beginnings being much more distant than those of painting. People began to carve in stone or wood either to make different tools or to create small figurines that they used for various purposes. Archaeological discoveries have shown that the sculptures dating back to prehistoric times were made of stone or ivory, but also clay.

    The Ancient Times Sculptures HD Images You Want to See

  29. So you’re getting exactly what you asked for, cunt. Don’t bitch now.

  30. “This is how stupid Becerra thinks people are.”

    People are far stupider than he thinks they are.

  31. Thank you so my for your great Information. Realy helpful.


  32. Thank you so much shayaring information , great post

  33. What are you complaining about, Scott? It’s what Reason staff overwhelmingly voted for. You got what you wanted.

    1. Oh no not basic competence. Oh no not a lack of psychopathic egomania on top of a pandemic. What will we ever do without coup attempts?

      Some bureaucrat doesn’t want children smoking. It’s the death of freedom!

      1. Because you like things shoved up your ass doesn’t mean the rest of us do.

  34. I am creating an honest wage from home 1900 Dollars/week , that is wonderful, below a year agone i used to be unemployed during a atrocious economy. I convey God on a daily basis i used to be endowed these directions and currently it’s my duty to pay it forward and share it with everybody, Here is I started…
    Here is More information.

  35. “Biden’s Choice To Head Health and Human Services Is a Lawsuit-Happy Government Nanny”
    You expected something else? LOL

  36. One of the most important jobs in the early months of 2021 will be to get the Covid19 under control. Much of the economy and a return to normal depend on this being accomplished. Xavier Becerra is a political heavy weight who has the skill set to take on this task. To get the vaccine distributed, to make sure we have hospital beds and necessary supplies. I think that most of this article’s criticisms are irrelevant for the foresee able future. We can address his positions on abortion and Gatorade later.

    As a contrast, consider the current incompetent administration. We are learning to day that they did not purchase enough vaccine. This is an administration that is all talk and little else. The Biden administration will be better because there is no way to be worse.

    1. This may be the most laughable of all your takes. A heavy-weight? He’s a petty, egotistical partisan schmuck, the equivalent of an ambulance chaser, and a perfect match for the Biden administration. It is reasonable to look at his performance and stances from a libertarian viewpoint, and a neutral viewpoint, to assess how he will likely impact policy. And, he is not likely to suddenly become a rational person, working for the interest of all Americans. As for your claim about the vaccine, ‘purchasing,’ and the two administrations -try to shed your in-group biases.

    2. What’s a foresee able future?

  37. One suspects that Mr. Becerra was touted for this position by President-to-be Harris.

  38. The death of healthcare freedom will be complete.

  39. I get paid over $90 per hour working from home with 2 kids at home. I never thought I’d be able to do it but my best friend earns over 10k a month doing this and she convinced me to try. The potential with this is endless. Heres what I’ve been doing.. Here is More information.

  40. nice post thanks for it I really like it easy cash job

  41. Yeah, so I don’t ever want to hear anyone clown Trump for appointing Ben Carson to lead HUD again. He was at least as qualified for that job as this guy is for HHS.

  42. You now have the head of HHS and the Vice President Harris who have both made it clear they want to end private insurance. A horrible time for freedom

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.