Over the holiday weekend, the White House coronavirus task force did not hold a briefing, so the press was champing at the bit by the time Monday rolled around.
With this in mind, top White House virus expert Dr. Anthony Fauci led off Monday’s presser with a disclaimer about controversial comments he made during a CNN interview on Sunday. And according to The Intercept co-founder Glenn Greenwald, Fauci was the angriest he has been in more than three decades after a CBS reporter tried to get Fauci to say that President Donald Trump had forced him to make the statement, The Hill reported.
Dr. Fauci is generally very poised and calm during these press conferences, but the CBS report’s insinuation set him off. Though he is not entirely stonefaced during Trump’s speeches, when he is at the microphone, he has generally been measured with his responses… Until Monday.
Over the weekend, Dr. Fauci did an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper during which he appeared to imply that Donald Trump had ignored warnings to respond to the coronavirus. The press took those comments and ran with them, creating a media firestorm that Fauci clearly felt compelled to address.
After making his statement at the start of Monday’s briefing, CBS White House correspondent Paula Reid asked Dr. Fauci if he was being forced to make the statement. “Are you doing this voluntarily or did the president or the vice president ask?” Reid questioned.
Fauci, with pure disgust on his face and a defiant tone, stated: “Everything I do is voluntary. Please. Don’t even imply that.” This led Intercept co-founder Glenn Greenwald to say he has never seen Fauci get that angry in all the years he has covered him:
Dr. Fauci got the angriest I’ve seen him in 35 years of watching him – going back to the AIDS epidemic – at the suggestion that he’s saying and doing things he doesn’t believe because he’s forced to by Trump in order to keep his job:pic.twitter.com/KTU9lYs0nS
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) April 13, 2020
The look Fauci shot at Reid was icy cold, but she had nowhere to hide — and it was all caught on camera.
Fauci is not the enemy
We may not always agree with what Dr. Fauci says, but this man is not the enemy. The left and the mainstream media have gone to great lengths to edit clips and make him appear as though there is a problem between Dr. Fauci and the president, but that is not the case.
Fauci is a scientist, and his function is to advise the president in his area of expertise — not on the economy or any other factors that would influence a decision made by government officials.
Fauci formulates his recommendations based on his experience and scientific evidence, which at times is at odds with what Donald Trump wants. However, during this crisis, we have all witnessed tremendous teamwork between the task force experts and Donald Trump.
The left is manipulating the natural give-and-take between medical experts and economic experts because they want to discredit the White House response, and they have been shockingly successful at doing so. But it won’t happen here.