Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., is questioning the ability of White House adviser Kellyanne Conway to coordinate the Trump administration's efforts to fight the opioid crisis.
In a Monday letter to White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, Warren suggested the Conway isn't ready to lead that effort, which was announced last week.
"This crisis requires swift, decisive action from the Trump administration to support addiction patients, their families, and their communities that are struggling to find long-term solutions," wrote Warren. "While the White House has made numerous announcements about the opioid crisis ... these steps are not adequate without critical funding and strong, experienced leadership."
She asked a series of questions, including what experience Conway has leading these sorts of initiatives.
"Has Conway led or coordinated any interagency efforts to address the opioid epidemic?" she asked.
"Does Ms. Conway have any previous experience working in public health, or working with drug or addiction policy?" Warren added. "Does she have any experience managing a public health agency or organization in government or the private sector?"
In August, Conway and former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price met with Trump about the opioid crisis, but that was her most recent public event about the issue.
To learn more about Conway's effort, Warren asked what her current duties are at the White House, and what would be added as she leads the fight against opioids.
Warren also said she disagrees with some of the comments Conway has made about opioids. She noted, for example, that Conway said in June that it takes "will" for people to fight opioids.
"These statements are extremely concerning, as they minimize the importance of federal resources for addiction treatment and suggest a deep misunderstanding of substance use disorder patients," Warren wrote. "It is equally concerning that Ms. Conway may now play a substantial role in guiding the administration on opioids after making these comments."
The Trump administration declared the opioid crisis a public emergency in October — it kills more than 100 people each day — but doing so did not release any additional federal funds for the crisis.
Warren asked for answers to her questions by Dec. 18.