Fauci Snaps At Sen. Paul Over Questions About Covid Origin

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul again confronted Dr. Anthony Fauci during a Senate hearing this week, this time about the role the U.S. National Institutes of Health (MIH) has played in funding gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

During Tuesday’s hearing, Paul asked Fauci — the director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the NIH — about the NIH’s role in gain-of-function research at the WIV.

Gain of function involves the manual enhancement of pathogens to make them more transmissible in order to produce a more effective cure.

Paul alleged the NIH, under Fauci’s leadership, has worked with Chinese scientists on modifying pathogens to make them more contagious during research funded by the NIH.

“Dr. Fauci, do you still support funding of the NIH funding of the lab in Wuhan?” asked Paul.

When his turn to speak came, Fauci immediately pushed back.

“Senator Paul, with all due respect, you are entirely, entirely and completely incorrect,” Fauci said. “The NIH has not ever and does not now fund gain of function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.”

Fauci claimed that the scientist and doctor the senator mentioned as having conducted such research does not engage in gain-of-function research.

He added that even if such research is conducted, it is in compliance with guidelines and regulation and is not conducted in China, but in North Carolina.

Paul insisted that it was gain-of-function research funded by a “subgrant.”

Fauci initially denied it was gain-of-function, but Paul pressed, forcing Fauci to acknowledge the U.S. grant was used for such research.

“Let me explain to you why that was done,” Fauci said. “The SARS-CoV-1 originated in bats in China. It would have been irresponsible of us if we did not investigate the bat viruses and the serology to see who might have been infected in China.”

Paul shot back: “Or perhaps it would be irresponsible to send it to the Chinese government that we may not be able to trust with this knowledge and with this incredibly dangerous viruses,” Paul interrupted, before accusing Fauci of supporting gain of function — a claim Fauci then called “incorrect,” according to Fox News.

Paul cited reports that the Wuhan lab’s top scientist said she was uncertain if the virus had originated in the lab.

“Will you in front of this group categorically say that the COVID-19 virus could not have occurred by serial passage in a laboratory?” Paul asked Fauci.

Fauci did not immediately reject the notion of the virus escaping from the WIV.

“I do not have any accounting of what the Chinese may have done, and I’m fully in favor of any further investigation of what went on in China,” he said. “However, I will repeat again, the NIH and NIAID categorically has not funded gain of function research to be conducted in the Wuhan Institute of Virology,” he said.

Worth noting: Last month, The Washington Post columnist Josh Rogin said in an interview with Megyn Kelly podcast that NIH scientists who were engaged in gain-of-function research were deliberately keeping the public in the dark out of fear they could lose their careers if they speak out against the NIH.

“This body of research, this gain-of-function research, the whole world of virologists … it’s very insular,” Rogin said. “I often talk to scientists who say the same thing, who say, ‘Listen, we really want to speak out about this, but we can’t do it.’ Why can’t we do it? Well, We get all of our funding from NIH, or NIAID, which is run by Dr. Fauci. … And so we can’t say anything like ‘Oh, gain-of-function research might be dangerous, or it might have come from a lab, because we’re going to lose our careers, we’re going to lose our funding, we’re not going to be able to do our work.’”

In March, former Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Robert Redfield said in an interview with CNN he believed SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) “escaped” from a lab in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

“It’s not unusual for respiratory pathogens that are being worked on in a laboratory to infect the laboratory worker,” Redfield said. “That’s not implying any intentionality. It’s my opinion, right? But I am a virologist. I have spent my life in virology.”

“I do not believe this somehow came from a bat to a human and at that moment in time that the virus came to the human, became one of the most infectious viruses that we know in humanity for human-to-human transmission.”

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The post Fauci Snaps At Sen. Paul Over Questions About Covid Origin appeared first on LaCorte News.

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Author: Damjan Tutarkov

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