Dr. Anthony Fauci said Tuesday that he remains fully confident in everything he did during the COVID-19 pandemic in the face of potential Republican Congressional oversight.
Fauci said during an interview at the STAT News Summit that it was strange for him to become such a controversial political figure after a career as a relatively anonymous medical official. But he hasn’t changed or become politically-motivated himself, he said, and welcomes any oversight a GOP Congress might want to conduct.
“I welcome oversight. I have no problem with oversight. I’ve testified before congress — literally, without hyperbole — hundreds of times over the last 38 years.”
– Dr. Anthony Fauci #STATSummit
— STAT (@statnews) November 15, 2022
“I’d be more than happy to discuss anything that we’ve done over the last several years with this outbreak, since I have nothing to hide and I can defend everything we’ve done,” he said.
Fauci said becoming a political figure couldn’t be avoided because of his disagreement with former President Donald Trump under whom he served during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. “That triggered such a pushback on the part of the extremists that I became public enemy No. 1,” he said.
“But I had a choice, I could either go with the flow of misinformation or push back. I pushed back, and now I’m in the position I’m in where I have to have federal agents guarding me because people want to kill me,” he added.
He described the oversight process as a healthy part of government and said he “welcomes” it. (RELATED: The Pandemic Industrial Complex Is Drying Up, As Thousands Of ‘Pandemic Experts’ Are Laid Off)
Republicans have promised to investigate Fauci’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and his potential role in a possible lab-leak origin of the virus if they take control of Congress after the Nov. 8 midterm elections. Some Republicans, like Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, even campaigned on the matter directly. Democrats have been far less critical of Fauci’s role in the pandemic response, although seven of them up for re-election pledged to help investigate the lab-leak theory if they continue to serve in the next Congress.