The war of words and ill-will between one of the country’s foremost immunologists and a guy who had to self-certify as an eye doctor is heating up again. Yesterday, Dr. Anthony Fauci and Sen. Rand Paul (Q-KY) got into another row during a Senate hearing, accusing each other of lying.
Fauci, who has been quite resilient as elected Republicans have increasingly stepped-up their attacks on him, and the work he has done since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Paul is among a group of Republicans who believe that Fauci may be covering up the role the National Institute of Health played in the initial outbreak; intimating that research being conducted in a Wuhan lab that was funded by the NIH was what produced, and ultimately unleashed the virus on the world.
As we reported yesterday, things were tense and terse between the pair during a Senate hearing, leading Fauci to ask when Rand Paul self-certified as a virulogist.
Things seemed like they might really boil over a few seconds later. Sen. Paul kept attacking Fauci, demanding to know why he “helped China cover up the Democrat Hoax virus” that he was diagnosed with and spread to his colleagues at the gym, after knowing he had tested positive. Paul then referred to “something I overheard at the malt shop” about COVID-19’s origin, and Fauci sarcastically mocked Paul again.
“I’m sorry, Sen. Paul. Please, refresh my memory. I know you’re a self-certified ophthalmologist,” Fauci began, “so if I’m ever in need of an eye exam and literally every other eye doctor on the planet isn’t free, I’ll give you a buzz. But, you’ll excuse me if I keep listening to actual virologists when it comes to battling viruses.” (AltFacts)
The so-called “lab leak” theory has not been ruled out or proven, and Fauci himself has called repeatedly for unbiased, independent investigations into the origins of COVID-19. Paul and several prominent Republicans, however, keep amplifying the theory that somehow Fauci was directly or indirectly involved, and isn’t being truthful about the “gain of function” research the NIH approved in Wuhan. During a radio interview this morning, Fauci repeated what he told Sen. Paul in yesterday’s hearing — that the Kentucky republican doesn’t “know what [he’s] talking about,” but tried to strike a conciliatory tone all the same.
“Well, I do stand by what I said. I don’t think Senator Paul knows what he’s talking about here, but I suppose that doesn’t make this topic any different from most topics he bloviates about,” Fauci said with a tinge of sympathy. “I shouldn’t, perhaps, be so hard on him. At the end of the day, I think the senator’s brain could stand to gain a little function.”
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Writer/comedian James Schlarmann is the founder of The Political Garbage Chute and his work has been featured on The Huffington Post. You can follow James on Facebook, Spotify, and Instagram, but not Twitter because Twitter is a cesspool.