Fauci, Paul Trade Accusations Of Lying At Covid Hearing
During a hearing Tuesday, Sen. Rand Paul tried to accuse Dr. Anthony Fauci of being partly to blame for starting the covid pandemic by helping fund research at a Wuhan lab. A frequently interrupted Fauci angrily pointed out the correct science and called Paul a liar.
Fauci, Paul Clash On Virus Origins, Trade Charges Of Lying
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, angrily confronted Kentucky GOP Sen. Rand Paul on Tuesday in testimony on Capitol Hill, rejecting Paul’s insinuation that the U.S. helped fund research at a Chinese lab that could have sparked the COVID-19 outbreak. Paul suggested that Fauci had lied before Congress when in May he denied that the National Institutes of Health funded so-called “gain of function” research — the practice of enhancing a virus in a lab to study its potential impact in the real world — at a Wuhan virology lab. U.S. intelligence agencies are currently exploring theories that an accidental leak from that lab could have led to the global pandemic. (7/21)
Fauci And Rand Paul Spar Again Over COVID Origins, Wuhan Lab
"On May 11, you stated that the NIH has not ever and does not now fund gain-of-function research to the Wuhan Institute of Virology and yet, gain-of-function research was done entirely to the Wuhan Institute by Dr. Shi [Zhengli] and was funded by the NIH," Paul said. The senator said that in Shi's study, she stated that she had received a grant from NIH for her work, which involved combining genetic information from various coronavirus that only infected animals to test transmissibility in humans. "Senator Paul, I have never lied before the Congress and I do not retract that statement," Fauci said. "This paper that you are referring to was judged by qualified staff up and down the chain as not being gain-of-function."(Fung, 7/20)
Fauci And Rand Paul Accuse Each Other Of Lying In Fiery Exchange
PAUL: "You take an animal virus and you increase its transmissibility to humans, you're saying that's not gain-of-function?" FAUCI: "That is correct. And Senator Paul, you do not know what you are talking about, quite frankly. And I want to say that officially. You do not know what you are talking about." ... PAUL: "All of the evidence is pointing that it came from the lab. There will be responsibility for those who funded the lab, including yourself." FAUCI: "I totally resent the lie you are now propagating, senator. ... You are implying that what we did was responsible for the deaths of individuals. I totally resent that and if anybody is lying here, senator, it is you." (7/20)
Fauci: Paul Doesn't Know What He's Talking About 'And I Want To Say That Officially'
It's not unusual for conservative Republicans and allies of former President Trump to clash with Fauci during hearings; Paul has done so on numerous occasions, as has Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio). In the past, Fauci has tried to remain relatively calm, if terse, even as he responds to personal attacks and accusations of a cover-up. But on Tuesday, Paul stepped up his fight, implying that Fauci had lied to Congress, and that he was fully aware of what the Wuhan lab was doing with grant money that came from NIH. He also suggested that Fauci and the NIH could be partly responsible for the pandemic and the deaths of 4 million people worldwide.(Weixel, 7/20)
In a later interview after the hearing —
Rand Paul: Fauci Intimidates Scientists From Contradicting Him Because 'He Controls All The Funding'
Scientists with differing opinions about COVID-19 origins than Dr. Anthony Fauci keep it to themselves because because the top disease expert controls much of their funding, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, told "Fox News Primetime" Tuesday night. Paul subjected Fauci to stiff questioning during a Senate hearing chaired by Democrat Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota earlier in the day, with Fauci quibbling over Paul's definition of gain-of-function research, which the lawmaker said came from a document sourced by another epidemiological expert. The senator went on to urge Fauci, the head of the National Institutes of Allergy & Infectious Disease, to reconsider prior testimony denying NIAID or NIH's particular funding endeavors at the Wuhan lab; where many believe COVID-19 originated – citing federal perjury laws. (Creitz, 7/21)