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Fmr. Gaetz staffer says FBI agents questioned him with ‘baseless claim’

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A former staffer for GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz (Fla.) has slammed the allegations against the congressman, and said that two FBI agents questioned him last week, after news of the Department of Justice’s investigation into Gaetz’s alleged sex-trafficking broke.

Gaetz has denied the allegations.

RELATED: Lawmakers urge Gaetz to resign as new details of DOJ probe emerge

Nathan Nelson, a former director of military affairs for Gaetz, told reporters during a Monday press conference that when agents visited his home to question him, they made it appear that they thought Nelson resigned due to him having knowledge of the congressman’s involvement in illegal conduct.

“I’m here to state this morning that nothing could be further from the truth,” Nelson said at the press conference held in northwest Florida. “Neither I, nor any other member of Congressman Gaetz’s staff had any knowledge of illegal activities.”

RELATED: Report: Matt Gaetz investigation now involves a missing FBI agent last seen 14 years ago

“This baseless claim against me leaves me further convinced that the allegations against Congressman Gaetz are likewise fabricated and merely an attempt to discredit a very vocal conservative,” Nelson said at the conference put together by Gaetz’s office.

While stating that he continues to be “loosely affiliated” with the congressman’s office as an unpaid adviser, Nelson said that he informed Gaetz’s office that he had talked with FBI agents, but that he has not spoken to the congressman personally in months.

The same day as the Nelson press conference, Gaetz published an op-ed in The Washington Examiner defending himself again, writing, “I am a representative in Congress, not a monk, and certainly not a criminal.”

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @DouglasPBraff.

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Health Industry Distributors’ Association: Supply Chain Delays ‘A Healthcare Issue’

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The Health Industry Distributors’ Association (HIDA) released harrowing data stating “Transportation Delays Are A Healthcare Issue.” HIDA’s December release states, “research estimates that approximately 8,000-12,000 containers of critical medical supplies are delayed an average of up to 37 days throughout the transportation system.”

The statement continues, “The West Coast port with the greatest number of delayed medical containers are the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. The most congested East Coast port is the Port of Savannah.”

An infographic is accompanied with the statement which breaks down the crisis further. 17 is the average number of days the shipments are delayed at the Port. There’s an 11 day average delay by rail, and a 9 day average delay by truck.

In those shipping containers, the infographic states 187,000 gowns, 360,000 syringes and 3.5 million surgical gloves are held. The ports with the most medical delayed supplies are Los Angeles/Long Beach, Savannah, New York/New Jersey, Charleston, Seattle, Oakland, Boston, Baltimore and Houston.

Axios reports under a “Why it matters” headline, that “Per their projections, medical supplies arriving at a U.S. port on Christmas Day won’t be delivered to hospitals and other care settings until February 2022.”

As a result, “that could delay critical supplies at a time when health care is already expected to most need them due to surges from Delta and Omicron.”

Additionally, “The supply chain problems can compound, starting with medical supplies languishing in U.S. ports for an average of 17 days, officials said.”

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