Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has repeatedly asserted that Dr. Anthony Fauci misled the American people about U.S. taxpayer funding of research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China.
Following the release of new evidence, Paul is now convinced that the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases lied under oath in his testimony to Congress.
“Fauci lied again”
The Wuhan laboratory has been at the center of speculation regarding the origins of COVID-19 and documents published this week by The Intercept provide details of a U.S. grant that ultimately funded the study of bat coronaviruses at the Chinese facility.
“Surprise surprise — Fauci lied again,” Paul tweeted on Tuesday. “And I was right about his agency funding novel Coronavirus research at Wuhan.”
In total, the grant amounted to $3.1 million, including $599,000 for the Wuhan Institute of Virology’s study of, among other things, bat coronaviruses that could be transmitted to humans.
According to The Intercept, documents also reveal that scientists involved in the process were well aware of the possible dangers associated with such research.
Paul has been one of Fauci’s chief critics on Capitol Hill and the two men have butted heads during multiple COVID-19 hearings in recent months. A major point of contention revolves around whether Fauci and the NIAID funded so-called gain-of-function research at the Chinese laboratory. Fauci has maintained that it did not happen, but Paul remained unconvinced.
Paul issues call to action
In one notable exchange, the senator accused Fauci of “dancing around” the question and effectively changing the definition of such research in order to claim that his agency did not provide direct funding.
Fauci steadfastly denied Paul’s allegation that he had been dishonest.
Of course, the newly released documents appear to show that Paul was right after all — and now he is calling for Fauci to pay the price.
“I have already asked the DOJ to review Fauci’s testimony for lying to Congress,” Paul said, according to Breitbart. “This report should make it abundantly clear that he needs to be held accountable.”
It remains to be seen whether Fauci, who also serves as the Biden administration’s top medical adviser, will actually face consequences for lying to Congress, a crime that could result in fines, prison time, or both.