The U.S. Senate passed a bill Wednesday night requiring the Biden administration to declassify all intelligence related to the Wuhan Institute of Virology and possible links the origins of the COVID-19 virus.
The vote came after the Department of Energy concluded earlier this week with low confidence that the COVID-19 pandemic was likely the result of a lab leak. Previously, the agency had not been able to determine if there was a link to the lab’s work and the pandemic’s outbreak.
“Identifying the origin of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID–19) is critical for preventing a similar pandemic from occurring in the future,” the bill reads. “The Director of National Intelligence should declassify and make available to the public as much information as possible about the origin of COVID–19.”
The legislation also requires the DNI to “declassify any and all information relating to potential links between the Wuhan Institute of Virology and the origin of the Coronavirus Disease 2019,” including activities performed by the institute on behalf of communist China’s People’s Liberation Army.
Tonight the Senate UNANIMOUSLY passed my bill to declassify all the intelligence the government has on #covid origins. Let the people see the truth!
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) March 2, 2023
Hawley said in a news release, “For nearly three years, anyone asking whether COVID-19 originated as a lab leak outbreak was silenced and branded as a conspiracy theorist.”
“Now these prudent skeptics stand vindicated,” he continued. “The Biden administration must immediately declassify all intelligence reports pertaining to the origins of COVID-19 and the Wuhan Institute of Virology. The American people deserve to know the truth,” Hawley said.
Braun said, “The Biden administration has called the lab leak theory a conspiracy theory from the beginning, and has only started to publicly admit they were wrong as the evidence becomes overwhelming.
“This bill passed the Senate unanimously in 2021, and since then the Biden administration has continued to keep information about COVID’s origins secret. The American people deserve transparency, free from government censors or media spin. It’s time to declassify everything we know about COVID’s origins and the Wuhan Institute of Virology, now,” Braun added.
The senator urged the House to follow the senate’s move and pass the bill.
“President Biden can’t ignore this: time to let Americans decide for ourselves,” Braun tweeted.
The Senate just unanimously passed @HawleyMO’s & my bill to declassify every piece of information about the COVID lab leak.
The House needs to pass this bill to let the American people see the facts!
President Biden can’t ignore this: time to let Americans decide for ourselves.
— Senator Mike Braun (@SenatorBraun) March 2, 2023
Fox News reported the legislation is expected to pass the Republican-controlled House.
However, House Democrats signaled Wednesday, they oppose the bill, arguing it should be left up to the Biden administration to decide what information is declassified.
“We believe in letting committees of jurisdiction guide the discussions ahead, working with the administration and asking the administration tough questions,” House Democratic Caucus Chair Rep. Pete Aguilar of California said Wednesday.
“And when we can do that in a way that can be shared with the American public we will, but declassification conversations are best left to the executive,” he said.
FBI Director Christopher Wray told Fox News in an interview that aired Tuesday, “the FBI has for quite some time now assessed that the origins of the pandemic are most likely a potential lab incident in Wuhan.”
🚨BREAKING: FBI Director Christopher Wray said that the origin of COVID was likely the result of a laboratory leak in China pic.twitter.com/ducPWduotG
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) February 28, 2023
“Here you are talking about a potential leak from a Chinese government-controlled lab that killed millions of Americans,” he said.
“The Chinese government, it seems to me, has been doing its best to try to thwart and obfuscate” the work the U.S. government and other nations are doing to determine COVID-19’s origins.
The Associated Press reported that Beijing dismissed the FBI’s view that COVID-19 is likely the result of a lab leak.
“By rehashing the lab-leak theory, the U.S. will not succeed in discrediting China, and instead, it will only hurt its own credibility,” China’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said.
“We urge the U.S. to respect science and facts … stop turning origin tracing into something about politics and intelligence, and stop disrupting social solidarity and origins cooperation,” she said.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.