Dr. Anthony Fauci —the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases— and members of the White House Coronavirus Task Force are confirming that President Donald Trump did not ask them to slow down coronavirus testing.
Fauci, along with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Robert Redfield, Adm, Brett P. Giroir, and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) head Stephen Hahn, appeared before the Energy and Commerce Committee during the “Oversight of the Trump Administration’s Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic” hearing.
During the hearing, Fauci was asked about Trump’s comments suggesting he asked officials to slow testing down to keep the number coronavirus cases lower.
The top infectious disease expert contradicted the president’s claim and said that “none” of the health experts were asked to do so.
“I, as a member of the task force, and my colleagues on the task force, to my knowledge, I know for sure but, to my knowledge, none of us have ever been told to slow down on testing. That just is a fact,” Fauci said, adding, “In fact, we will be doing more testing, as you’ve heard from Adm. Giroir,” Fauci said.
“It’s the opposite,” Fauci said “We’re going to be doing more testing.”
See Fauci’s remarks below:
Dr. Anthony Fauci reacts to President Trump's remarks on slowing down Covid-19 testing: " I know for sure, to my knowledge, none of us have ever been told to slow down on testing. … In fact, we will be doing more testing" https://t.co/89A8rppJQa pic.twitter.com/vgBxcsStfE
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) June 23, 2020
Redfield also echoed similar sentiments also confirming he had not been told to decrease testing. Fauci and Redfield’s remarks at the hearing follow multiple reports about the president’s testing remarks during his rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
When asked to offer context on the remarks, the president refused to confirm whether or not he had asked officials to slow down testing, as previously reported on IJR.
However, on Tuesday morning, the president confirmed that he was not joking when he made the remarks.
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