Rand Paul Drops Mic On Fauci: ‘Told You’, ‘Can’t Wait To See The Media Try To Spin The Fauci FOIA Emails’
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, tweeted two words in reaction to the release of Dr. Anthony Fauci’s emails.
Thousands of emails acquired by Buzzfeed News and hundreds more examined by The Washington Post from Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests illustrate Fauci’s replies to both criticism and praise as head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as he attempted to explain the risks of COVID-19 to the United States.
“Told you,” Paul posted in a early Tuesday tweet with the hashtag #firefauci.
He responded in another tweet: “Can’t wait to see the media try to spin the Fauci FOIA emails.”
Can’t wait to see the media try to spin the Fauci FOIA emails.
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) June 2, 2021
Paul has blasted Fauci on social media and in interviews for his statements on herd immunity, wearing masks after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, and dismissing a theory that COVID-19 may have originated at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, which has gained traction among the media in recent weeks despite his initial dismissal.
Paul has also criticized Fauci’s allegation that a $600,000 government funding from NIAID did not directly support the lab’s gain of function study, which includes tweaking a virus to make it more contagious in people, stated at a congressional hearing on May 25.
The grant was given to EcoHealth Alliance, which reportedly funded the Wuhan Institute of Virology to investigate the possibility of bat coronaviruses infecting people.
NIH Director Francis Collins said earlier in the hearing that a taxpayer-funded grant to EcoHealth and the Wuhan Institute of Virology to pursue gain of function research had been denied.
Some Republicans, including Paul, suspect that NIAID funds went to the Wuhan Institute of Virology to perform gain of function research, which some lawmakers and academics believe poses ethical, safety, and security issues.
“Fauci acknowledged that a gain of function super virus could escape a lab and cause a pandemic, but that it is worth the risk. His naïveté should disqualify him from government service,” Paul said in a tweet from May 28, responding to Fauci’s comments during the House Appropriations Committee subcommittee hearing.
Collins dismissed the so-called “lab leak theory” as a “conspiracy” in an April email to Fauci received by Buzzfeed.
Fauci stated coronavirus mutations that lead to COVID-19 are “totally consistent with a jump of a species from an animal to a human” rather than a lab leak in an email received by the site on April 17.
In an April 18, 2020, email obtained by Buzzfeed, Peter Daszak, president of EcoHealth, personally thanked Fauci for supporting “evidence” that COVID-19 came from an animal rather than the Wuhan lab.
“I just wanted to say a personal thank you on behalf of our staff and collaborators, for publicly standing up and stating that the scientific evidence supports a natural origin for COVID-19 from a bat-to-human spillover, not a lab release from the Wuhan Institute of Virology,” Daszak wrote to Fauci.
He applauded the NIAID director’s remarks as “brave,” adding they would “help dispel the myths being spun around the virus’s origins.”
“Many thanks for your kind note,” Fauci responded.
During a House Appropriations Committee subcommittee hearing on May 25, the NIAID director said that he had no objections to an investigation of China’s early management of the outbreak.
In the emails obtained by Buzzfeed, Fauci also said that store-bought masks would not be 100% effective in preventing COVID-19.
“Masks are really for infected people to prevent them from spreading infection to people who are not infected rather than protecting uninfected people from acquiring infection.” Fauci stated in an emailed response to a question regarding wearing masks when flying in February.
“Typical mask you buy in the drug store is not really effective in keeping out virus, which is small enough to pass through material.” he noted.
“It might, however, provide some slight benefit in keep out gross droplets if someone coughs or sneezes on you. I do not recommend that you wear a mask, particularly since you are going to a very low risk location.” he added.
Between the winter and spring of 2020, when the virus first arrived in the United States, and the spring of 2021, when infection counts started to drop significantly as more individuals got vaccinations, the emails reveal Fauci’s altering thinking and flip-flopping on various COVID-19-related topics.
Some politicians and commentators have hailed the NIAID director as a hero, while others have condemned him for releasing contradictory information.
According to a May 23 Wall Street Journal story using previously secret US intelligence materials, some Wuhan Institute of Virology employees who became sick in 2019 needed hospitalization, adding support to the “lab-leak theory.”
“United States government has reason to believe that several researchers inside the WIV became sick in autumn 2019.” the State Department confirmed in January 2021.
They had symptoms that were consistent with both COVID-19 and “and common seasonal illness.” according to the study.
After the 2003 outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, the Wuhan Institute of Virology, one of China’s leading viral research laboratories, developed an archive of genetic information regarding bat coronaviruses, but was criticized for its lack of transparency during the pandemic.
Current and former officials are debating the intelligence’s credibility, according to the Journal. Because the evidence was given by foreign contacts, at least one advised the paper that further study is required. According to another source, the evidence seemed to be accurate and “was of exquisite quality.”
China has dismissed any allegations that the virus was somehow released from the facility, according to the publication. On Sunday, China accused the United States of continuing to “hype the lab leak theory.”
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