dr. Anthony Fauci brought up the bristles of conservative pundits and his critics on the right when he suggested in an interview Wednesday that attacks on him were “attacks on science.”
Leading Fox News personalities, including Laura Ingraham, Sean Hannity, and Tucker Carlson, used their respective platforms to reprimand the director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, laying the accusation of self-aggrandizement at his feet.
Fauci’s comments seemingly equating themselves with science also unleashed a wave of disdain on Twitter, with critics on the right calling the veteran doctor a “little tyrant” with a God complex.
Fauci’s comments and the ensuing firestorm came after Republican Senator Marsha Blackburn called on Marco Rubio and Tom Cotton Fauci to resign or resign, arguing that he misled the American people about the origins of COVID-19 and its use. face masks on the start of the corona pandemic.
Fighting Words: Dr. Anthony Fauci came under fire on Wednesday after telling MSNBC’s Chuck Todd that attacks on him were ‘attacks on science’
Laura Ingraham, the host of Fox News’ The Ingraham Angle, mocked Fauci’s comments and said he expressed himself as a “deity.”
“A lot of what you see as attacks on me are, frankly, attacks on science, because all the things I’ve talked about from the beginning are always fundamentally based on science,” Fauci said during Wednesday’s interview.
He continued, “If you try to get hold of me as a public health officer and scientist, you’re not just going to trap Dr. Anthony Fauci, but also science. And anyone who looks at what’s going on sees that clearly. You have to sleep not to see that.’
Responding to a question from Todd about the dangers of discrediting public health officials, Fauci said it could make people lose faith in the vaccine program, as it did in Russia.
Laura Ingraham, the host of Fox News’ The Ingraham Angle, played the clip of Fauci’s interview, then went on to mock his comments and say with a grin, ‘Wait a minute, is that the argument? His argument is essentially… ‘I am the science! I am the truth!’ she said in a deeper voice.
She continued, “the man really thinks he’s some kind of deity.”
Ingraham’s colleague, Sean Hannity, also took advantage of Fauci’s comments, saying that he became “very pissed off, very defensive, even outraged, trying to argue that criticizing him is a critique of science.
“No, just the opposite,” Hannity said, before introducing his guest, Senator John Kennedy, a Republican from Louisiana, and inviting him to comment on Fauci’s comments.
“I know Dr. Fauci, I like Dr. Fauci, I respect Dr. Fauci,” Kennedy said. “But Dr. Fauci has to scrape the shit. This isn’t about Dr. Fauci. It’s not about his feelings, and I’m sorry if his feelings were hurt. You know, maybe he should buy an emotional support pony.”
Also on Wednesday, Fox News host Tucker Carlson took a swipe at Fauci, calling him “King Tony Fauci.”
He later followed suit with the words: ‘normal people don’t talk like that. It’s not Fauci who just believes he’s immune. You can’t say anything negative about him or the culture revolution.’
Right-wing critics of President Joe Biden’s top medical adviser were quick to take to Twitter to scorn him for his comments.
Newsmax reporter John Cardillo didn’t mince words, writing: “Only a sociopathic narcissist speaks about himself in the third person and considers himself the last word on ‘science’. Fauci should die in prison and then be buried.”
Curtis Houck, editor-in-chief of NewsBusters, tweeted, “Fauci is coming out of this really bad. He comes across as an angry little tyrant angry that he is no longer a dictator who rules the country under the guise that everything he said is “fundamentally based on science.”
Meanwhile, conservative talk radio host Buck Sexton mockingly paraphrased France’s King Louis XVI’s famous saying ‘I am the state’ and tweeted: ‘Le Science, C’est moi’ – Dr Fauci.’
Fauci showed up on Todd’s Meet The Press show a day after Senator Blackburn, of Tennessee, posted a video accusing the scientist of collaborating with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and “cherry-picking” facts so the public would only know what Zuckerberg and Fauci wanted them to know .
Fauci said he didn’t want to criticize a US senator, but said he had “no idea what she was talking about.”
Conservative politicians and pundits, who have long criticized Fauci for his handling of the pandemic, stepped up their attacks on him last week after a large number of his emails were released to The Washington Post and Buzzfeed News via Freedom of Information requests. Information Act.
Right-wing critics claim the emails portray Fauci as a liar who denounced the effectiveness of mask use and dismissed the possibility that the virus came from the Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan, China, and not an animal .
In an email written on February 5, 2020, before COVID-19 had become a pandemic, Fauci wrote: ‘Masks are really for infected people to prevent them from spreading infection to people who are not infected, rather than not. -protect infected people from acquiring infection. The typical drugstore mask isn’t really effective at keeping out viruses that are small enough to pass through the material,” Fauci wrote in an email sent to Sylvia Burwell.
Sean Hannity said Fauci ‘got very pissed off, very defensive, even outraged, trying to argue that criticizing him is a critique of science’
Fox News’ Tucker Carlson took a swipe at Fauci, calling him ‘King Tony Fauci’
Burwell, president of American University and former Secretary of Health and Human Services, had asked Fauci if she should bring a mask to the airport.
Weeks after Fauci sent his response to Burwell in late February 2020, there were still fewer than 100 reported cases of COVID-19 in the U.S.
Marsha Blackburn is one of three GOP senators calling on Fauci to resign
When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated their guidelines on April 3, 2020 to recommend people wear masks, Fauci promoted that message as well.
Senators Blackburn, Cotton and Rubio joined forces this week to demand that Fauci resign or be fired by the Biden administration.
‘Dr. Fauci has lost the trust of the American people with his repeated evasion, deception and politicized statements,” Cotton said, as reported by Fox News. “If he doesn’t step down, Joe Biden will have to fire him.”
Rubio claimed Fauci withheld information from the public for 16 months, rejected “plausible statements about the origin of COVID,” and lied to Congress.
“He is supposed to be an evidence-based public health official, not an expert who twists the truth to fit his personal judgment,” the Florida senator said.
After releasing Fauci’s emails, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki called Fauci an “undeniable asset in our country’s pandemic response.”
Asked at a press conference if she could envision a circumstance in which Biden would one day fire Fauci, Psaki curtly replied, “No.”
White House press secretary Jen Psaki called Fauci an ‘undeniable asset in our country’s pandemic response’