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Republicans Are One Week Away From Starting a “Lock Her Up” Chant for Anthony Fauci


Early on in the COVID-19 pandemic, the GOP collectively decided to make Anthony Fauci, M.D., public enemy number one, having found in the veteran immunologist the perfect target through which to whip up their base and take the spotlight off the fact that the then president had let the virus gain a foothold in the country while actively lying about it at every turn. Fauci, of course, is everything conservatives hate: An educated man of science with not one but two degrees, he committed what Republicans believe was a capital offense when he failed to back up everything Donald Trump said about the disease, including the part about treating it by freebasing bleach. While tiresome and dangerous—Fauci and his family required a security detail at one point—the ridiculous attacks and conspiracies, like that Fauci invented the coronavirus and is “part of a secret cabal with Bill Gates and George Soros to profit from vaccines” have had little impact. Fauci remains employed by the government, and by all accounts Joe Biden is happy with his work. “The president and the administration feel that Dr. Fauci has played an incredible role in getting the pandemic under control and being a voice to the public throughout the course of this pandemic,“ White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said this week.

But like the living embodiment of a QAnon forum, Republicans, Trump, and Fox News now appear to believe they’ve found some kind of smoking gun showing Fauci is somehow responsible for the virus, based on the fresh interest in the lab-leak theory (which the doctor himself is supportive of investigating, which you wouldn’t think he would be if he was implicated in the whole thing, a slight wrinkle conservatives will probably explain at a time and place TBD). So naturally, they’re amping up their attacks like he‘s the second coming of Benghazi/Hillary Clinton/Pol Pot.

Per Axios:

President Trump plans to make Anthony Fauci a top target at upcoming rallies, using increased attention to the Wuhan lab-leak theory as a weapon against an official long viewed as more trustworthy. Why it matters: Trump and conservative media have made Fauci an improbable face of the opposition, trying to give him the cartoon-villain status once accorded to former Sen. Harry Reid, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, or—in Trump’s case—Hillary Clinton. Trump amped up his longtime Fauci rants yesterday in a statement calling for COVID reparations from China: “The correspondence between Dr. Fauci and China speaks too loudly for anyone to ignore. China should pay Ten Trillion Dollars to America, and the World, for the death and destruction they have caused!”

Fox News’ prime-time stars are [also] amping up their Fauci rants based on new questions about COVID’s origins. “[A]ll the smirking morons in the American news media changed their view completely overnight,” Tucker Carlson said last night, 24 hours after saying Fauci should be criminally investigated. “LORD FAUCI EXPOSED,” said one Tucker graphic. Another dubbed him “Lord Fauci, Patron Saint Of Wuhan.” Sean Hannity jumped the gun last night with a graphic calling new revelations “the FALL of FAUCI.”

Reality check: The theory most experts still believe to be most likely is that the virus was transmitted from a bat to some other species of animal, then to humans. That’s what happened with plenty of other viruses.

Incidentally, none of the people calling for the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to basically be tried for war crimes have expressed the slightest interest in any investigation whatsoever into the events of January 6 and in fact have lost their collective shit over the prospect of anyone digging into the that day, and the lead-up, too closely.

Meanwhile, in an interview with the Financial Times, Fauci himself said China should release medical records for nine people whose sicknesses could shed some vital light onto the question of COVID-19’s origins. “I have always felt that the overwhelming likelihood—given the experience we have had with SARS, MERS, Ebola, HIV, bird flu, the swine flu pandemic of 2009—was that the virus jumped species,” Fauci said. “But we need to keep on investigating until a possibility is proven.” As for the possibility he or his organization might actually be responsible for the virus because they provided a small amount of funding to the Wuhan lab, Fauci, like most sane people, believes the idea is absurd. “Are you really saying that we are implicated because we gave a multibillion-dollar institution $120,000 a year for bat surveillance?” he asked.

Mike Pence continues to be weirdly understanding about that time Donald Trump nearly had him killed

Was the former V.P. thrilled about the insurrection that took place as he was attempting to certify Joe Biden‘s win, which involved Trump supporters chanting “Hang Mike Pence”? No, but he’s not going to let it come between him and the 45th president, whom he continues to hold in high regard. Per The Washington Post:



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