Republicans have hated Dr. Fauci, the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, ever since it became clear that he was interested in the actual science of COVID-19 and not just blindly peddling whatever self-serving messaging then-President Trump was spewing to his credulous supporters.
The election of President Biden only exacerbated the growing conservative hatred for the good doctor and it’s now reaching its apotheosis in the wake of the release of a trove of Fauci’s emails. The documents were obtained via the Freedom for Information Act and offer a look at how Fauci conducted himself at the height of the pandemic. They reveal him to be the hardworking, compassionate professional many of us have long seen him as.
That said, one particular email has become the source of rapidly spreading conspiracy theories within the right-wing sphere. It was sent to Fauci from an individual at the EcoHealth Alliance, an organization that funds scientific research and which was involved with the virology lab in Wuhan, China where have some have speculated that COVID-19 originated.
The email itself appears entirely innocuous but Republicans are using it to claim that Fauci has been intentionally hiding the origins of the virus and that he perhaps even had a hand in its creation — all without evidence. Fauci explained to CNN that the email is being misconstrued.
“You can misconstrue it however you want — that email was from a person to me saying ‘thank you’ for whatever it is he thought I said, and I said that I think the most likely origin is a jumping of species. I still do think it is, at the same time as I’m keeping an open mind that it might be a lab leak,” said Fauci.
The fact that Fauci and those he was working with to understand the virus considered the possibility that it might be manmade shouldn’t come as a surprise as it would have been utterly irresponsible to not even consider the idea. But emails showing he considered it doesn’t mean he concluded that such was the case.
Of course, right-wingers never let something like the truth get in the way of a good narrative and prominent Republicans are leading the charge to have Fauci fired and even face criminal consequences for his imagined crimes. Yesterday, Trump himself got in on the action by releasing two statements attacking Fauci.
Today, Fox’s Peter Doocy asked White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki if she could “imagine any circumstance where President Biden would ever fire Fauci.” Psaki, professional that she is, has long realized that Doocy is a right-wing hack. He rarely asks legitimate questions and instead focuses on generating headlines for his reactionary network.
Rather than get into the weeds over his leading question, she responded with a simple: “No.” She then immediately moved on, demonstrating how little respect she had for the query. Perfect.
Doocy: Since you mentioned Dr. Fauci again, could you imagine any circumstance where President Biden would ever fire him?
Psaki: No pic.twitter.com/ErnmDiYYgC
— Acyn (@Acyn) June 4, 2021
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This is a staff report from former Occupy Democrats Editor in Chief Colin Taylor or contributor Rob Haffney.