Tucker Carlson targets Anthony Fauci again, says he 'effectively misled' on question about coronavirus origin
Dr Anthony Fauci’s survival in President Donald Trump’s coronavirus task force has so far surprised many because his views have often contradicted those of the commander-in-chief on the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic. The eminent immunologist has not been fired yet by the president but the conservative camp has made it a habit of attacking the 79-year-old day in and day out.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson is one who has targeted Fauci more than once in the period when the government is fighting the pandemic tooth and nail. He has alleged the veteran physician repeatedly proved to be wrong and said he is not an economist. He has also accused Fauci of seeing things through the narrow lens of his profession and ignoring the greater danger that confronts America if it continues to see the lockdown.
Carlson, who also claimed recently that the USA's death toll figures were inflated only to be negated by Fauci, has now attacked the medical expert saying the latter evaded a question about reports that the coronavirus was created in a lab. The debate that the virus did not actually start spreading from a wet market but a lab in Wuhan is snowballing gradually even though the lab theory was initially dismissed as a conspiracy. A few days ago, the country’s top military leader said an investigation was being done into the claim but there was no solid conclusion.
On Friday, April 17, Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was asked about coronavirus’ lab-origin theory during the daily briefing at the White House. Fauci then said a group of virologists studied the virus and came to the conclusion that it spread “from an animal to a human."
Carlson was not impressed with Fauci’s answer and felt he avoided the question. The conservative commentator, who thought it was a “kind of an amazing exchange”, said: “The first thing you notice is, it doesn’t answer the question that was asked.”
“The question is not, ‘Was it genetically engineered?’ The question is, ‘Did it come somehow from the lab?’ And he didn’t answer that. Instead, he effectively misled. Not clear why he did that,” he added.
Arkansas’ Republican Senator Tom Cotton is one who has been consistently claiming that the virus has spread from a lab in Wuhan and on Wednesday, April 15, he told Fox that China’s leadership “must be made to pay the price” if it is found that the virus has indeed come from one of its labs.
The controversy gained more traction recently after it was found that a COVID-19 fact-checker on Facebook, who dismissed the lab theory, has worked for the same lab.
The World Health Organization concluded the virus first surfaced in Wuhan towards the end of last year and an investigative report in February found “early cases identified in Wuhan are believed to have acquired infection from a zoonotic source” in the Chinese city’s Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market. The report’s authenticity, however, has been questioned later.
On April 3, Carlson alleged that Fauci proved to be wrong about the pandemic “repeatedly” and his call for all states to issue stay-at-home orders would lead to “national suicide." He called Fauci an “impressive person” but added that he was not perfect.
In January, Fauci said there was no major threat
The commentator cited a January Newsmax interview with Fauci in which he said the coronavirus is “is not a major threat to the people of the United States and this is not something that the citizens of the United States right now should be worried about.”
Carlson took Fauci on over his support for the stay-at-home orders. While the physician sought some form of quarantine throughout the entire US, Carlson reminded the fact that more than 10 million (the number has gone up to 22 million now) people have lost their jobs and if this continued for another year, a “national suicide” would not far. He said yet Fauci was suggesting it. He said the veteran was not taking into consideration the economic impact of the lockdown since he himself has “bulletproof job security."