The latest media “bombshell” is an audio clip recorded during an interview between author Bob Woodward and President Donald Trump that appeared to show Trump acknowledging that he downplayed the severity of the coronavirus pandemic in its early days. But according to the leading expert on the matter, that claim is up for dispute.
Dr. Anthony Fauci announced in an interview with Fox News’ John Roberts on Wednesday that he didn’t get the impression that Trump had downplayed or distorted anything, The Daily Caller reported.
“I didn’t really see any discrepancies”
Roberts was filling in Wednesday for host Dana Perino on Fox’s Daily Briefing.
Speaking with Fox’s chief White House correspondent, Fauci noted that he has yet to see what Woodward alleges in his new book, which is ostensibly based on what the president said in multiple taped interviews.
Still, the doctor broke down his experiences with Trump as a top adviser on the White House’s coronavirus task force.
“In my discussions and the discussions of other task force members with the president, we’re talking about the reality of what was going on,” Fauci said, according to Fox News. “And then when we would get up in front of the press conferences, which were very, very common after our discussions with the president, he really didn’t say anything different than we discussed when we were with him.”
Fauci went on: “So, I may not be tuned in to the right thing that they’re talking about. But I didn’t really see any discrepancies between what he told us and what we told him, and what he ultimately came out publicly and said.”
“I have not seen that kind of distortion”
Roberts went on to ask Fauci if he ever had the sense that Trump was deliberately playing down the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“No. No, no, I didn’t. I didn’t get any sense that he was distorting anything,” Fauci replied, according to the Daily Caller.
“I mean, in my discussions with him, they were always straightforward about the concerns that we had. We related that to him. And when he would go out, I’d hear him discussing the same sort of things,” the doctor continued. “He would often say, ‘We just got through with a briefing with the group from the task force,’ and would talk about it. So, no, it may have happened, but I have not seen that kind of distortion.”
Dr. Fauci just came out and defended Trump. The Woodward stuff is nonsense. pic.twitter.com/ySPUM6pfP6
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) September 9, 2020
If Fauci is right, it seems the latest “bombshell” from Woodward and his media comrades, like so many other “bombshells” that came before it, is nothing more than a dud.