Dr. Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes of Health has spoken out following the Trump campaign’s inclusion of some of his comments in a campaign ad that’s been airing in Michigan, which he says was done without his consent. Fauci’s original comments that are featured in the ad were also taken rather grossly out of context. In the original conversation, which took place as part of a Fox News interview in March, Fauci broadly praised the Coronavirus response efforts of officials across the administration — but the Trump ad cuts out the part where Fauci identifies who he’s talking about, making it sound like he was potentially referring to the president personally.
‘In my nearly five decades of public service, I have never publicly endorsed any political candidate. The comments attributed to me without my permission in the GOP campaign ad were taken out of context from a broad statement I made months ago about the efforts of federal public health officials.’
It’s definitely not great when the re-election campaign of the president of the United States is taking comments out of context from a top public health official. The Trump campaign ad in question features a clip of Fauci saying that he “can’t imagine that anybody could be doing more” — and that’s it. The ad does not feature the part of his comments where he identifies who he’s actually talking about.
In his original interview, Fauci said the following while discussing the Trump administration’s response to the Coronavirus pandemic:
‘We’re talking about all hands on deck. I, as one of many people on a team, I’m not the only person. Since the beginning that we even recognized what this was, I have been devoting almost full time on this. I’m down at the White House virtually every day with the task force. It’s every single day. So, I can’t imagine that under any circumstances that anybody could be doing more.’
In the time since those original comments from Fauci, the status of the Coronavirus pandemic in the United States and the Trump administration’s response to it have both changed dramatically. Those incessantly consistent White House task force meetings have stopped, and the potential for a brisk turnaround out of the thicket of the pandemic has faded. The U.S. has suffered almost 8 million confirmed Coronavirus cases and what’s approaching 220,000 Coronavirus-connected deaths, according to one prominent tally. Among those who have survived their bouts with the Coronavirus, there could be significant lingering health issues.
The Trump campaign responded with belligerence when confronted over their deceptive usage of Fauci’s words. Campaign spokesperson Tim Murtaugh noted the “accuracy” of Fauci’s months-old comments — without noting the vast changes of circumstance that have occurred in the time since. Neither did he note the potentially deceptive nature of the ad’s editing.
‘These are Dr. Fauci’s own words. The video is from a nationally broadcast television interview in which Dr. Fauci was praising the work of the Trump Administration. The words spoken are accurate, and directly from Dr. Fauci’s mouth.’
The Trump team continues to present smoke and mirrors to the American people amidst the ongoing Coronavirus crisis.