Well-coached Fauci skates away from crimes at Capitol Hill hearing

Well-coached Fauci skates away from crimes at Capitol Hill hearing

Well-coached Fauci skates away from crimes at Capitol Hill hearing

A vocal critic of Dr. Anthony Fauci says his testimony before a House pandemic subcommittee this week provided no “gotcha moments" for the slippery witness and therefore no resolution for a nation affected by his decisions.

Fauci gave the committee some victories in confirming that his senior advisor, Dr. David Morens, violated official policies of the National Institute of Health and therefore potentially broke federal law.

Fauci also agreed with the committee’s admonishment of EcoHealth and its president, Dr. Peter Daszak, and he corrected previous testimony regarding possible conflicts of interest for his staff members.

He also acknowledged the lab leak hypothesis on the origin of COVID-19 was indeed possible -- and not a conspiracy theory.

Through it all, however, Fauci deftly navigated dangerous waters with the clear goal of self-preservation.

Malone, Dr. Robert (Unity Project) Malone

“We saw an awe-shucks, down-home that I have never seen," Dr. Robert Malone, the chief medial and regulatory officer for The Unity Project, said on Washington Watch Tuesday.

"It’s not his real personality," Malone further stated. "We saw very skillful deflection and blaming of others.  What was clear in Dr. Fauci’s testimony was No. 1, that he had been very well-coached." 

Earlier this year, Fauci appeared before the committee in a two-day closed-door meeting in which he testified to serious failures in the government response – which he led – to the pandemic.

He confirmed much of that testimony in Monday’s public hearing yet ultimately refused to take responsibility for the actions of his office.

The Select Subcommittee, in its takeaways from the public hearing, said Fauci “showed no remorse for the millions of lives affected by his divisive rhetoric and unscientific policies."

The policies included mask mandates, business and church lockdowns, and school closures. 

Fauci's strong advocacy for vaccines led other federal and state officials to impose mandates.

No apologies from Fauci

“He did not apologize to the thousands of Americans who lost their jobs because they refused the novel vaccine, nor did he apologize to children experiencing severe learning loss as a result of actions he promoted,” the committee wrote.

Speaking on American Family Radio, Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-Wisconsin) called the Fauci-led response a “once-in-a-generation event" that people should not forget but instead be reminded of regularly. 

“Think about all the loss of learning that happened with that generation. We have to remind them when they become voters what Anthony Fauci and big government did to them,” he told American Family Radio host Jenna Ellis Wednesday.

Fauci was quick to throw others under the bus in his testimony, most notably his former senior advisor, Morens, and the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration. The declaration promoted acquired immunity as a means of combatting COVID-19.

House Republicans were investigating Morens in April over email conversations sent from private accounts in COVID-19 discussions with two non-government employees, Daszak, who he described as a close friend, and Gerald Keusch, an epidemiologist at Boston University.

The committee uncovered that Morens intentionally used his personal Gmail account to conduct official NIH business to avoid Freedom of Information Act requests for sensitive information. Morens told colleagues that he would “delete anything [he didn’t] want to see in The New York Times, The Washington Examiner reported.

Fauci blew off his relationship with Morens, who had been with him for decades, Malone said.

“If you believe Dr. Morens’ emails, they have a close working relationship, see each other regularly, sounded like on a weekly basis. Dr. Morens had the ability to visit Fauci in his home and pass documents," Malone said. "Dr. Fauci acted as if he hardly knew him and said the title of senior advisor was basically honorific. It was just a particular governmental title; it didn’t really mean anything in terms of the relationship." 

The Great Barrington Declaration is a public health statement signed by scientists Sunetra Gupta, Jay Bhattacharya and Martin Kulldorff in October 2020. It called for “focused protection” to combat COVID-19 by allowing younger, healthier individuals to become infected with the virus, thereby achieving herd immunity, while protecting vulnerable populations such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions.

“Dr. Fauci, in his efforts to defend himself, basically said the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration would have caused a million deaths if they would have had their way with people. That’s completely at odds with the data," Malone said. "Again, a striking example of Dr. Fauci just going aggressive directly against people who were saying things that were inconvenient for him. This happened all the way through the testimony, but he did it with a smile." 

‘Six feet apart’ just appeared

Fauci also reaffirmed earlier testimony that some of his guidance of the public – particularly the “six feet apart” encouragement that permeated restaurants, retail stores and public venues – was arbitrary and not based on science.

“It sort of just appeared,” Fauci said during his testimony before lawmakers. 

“In the cases of these things like six-foot distancing, mask usage, etc., he put the blame for these things that he acknowledged were not based on science directly on the CDC and by inference on Bob Redfield,” Malone said.

Redfield was the CDC director for the Trump administration.

“He should go down in history as one of the most reviled figures in the history of America for what he did,” Tiffany said.

Congressional legislation has been drafted that would curtail unlimited powers from government employees in positions like Fauci’s, Tiffany said.

GOP needs the ‘trifecta’ in November

The reality is that Republicans need to expand their own authority to give that legislation a better chance to become law.

Tiffany, Rep. Thomas (R-Wisconsin) Tiffany

Tiffany stressed the importance of House efforts to defund certain agencies but said voters may be skeptical about what Republicans could get done, even with the coveted “trifecta” of governance.

“They may say we gave that to you in 2016 and it did not happen, why should we have confidence in 2024?” he said.

The answer to that is that a second Trump administrative team would be more prepared.

“In 2016, it was the classic dog caught the car. They did not realize what they were up against in terms of the weaponization of government. They had some idea of how deep the swamp was, but now there’s a full understanding.

“Now they would be ready to write those budgets. Now there’s an understanding that it would be a new day here,” Tiffany said.