Amid reports that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, is being sidelined, President Donald Trump says he has a good relationship with him — even if he disagrees with his advice.
“I have a very good relationship with Dr. Fauci,” Trump said when asked if he still values Fauci’s advice. “I’ve had for a long time, right from the beginning. I find him to be a very nice person. I don’t always agree with him.”
“I get along with him very well. I like him, personally,” he added.
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President Trump: "I have a very good relationship with Dr. Fauci…I find him to be a very nice person. I don't always agree with him…I get along with him very well. I like him, personally."
— CSPAN (@cspan) July 13, 2020
Trump went on to cite his ban on travel from China, which he said Fauci would “admit that it was a good decision.”
His comments come amid reports that White House officials are trying to sideline Fauci and limit his media appearances because the president does not like his advice.
However, Admiral Brett Giroir, the Assistant Secretary for Health, rejected the notion that Fauci was being sidelined, as IJR reported.
“I want to put to just put this to rest. There is complete, open, honest discussion within the task force,” Giroir said
“I respect Dr. Fauci a lot, but Dr. Fauci is not 100% right, and he also doesn’t necessarily — and he admits that — have the whole national interest in mind. He looks at it from a very narrow public health point of view, but let me just say there is absolutely open discourse. I feel absolutely free saying anything to the vice president within those rooms. The vice president I know briefs the president on a daily basis. So nobody feels like anything is held back.”
— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) July 12, 2020
Despite administration officials’ denials, The Washington Post reported that White House officials are “concerned about the number of times Dr. Fauci has been wrong on things.”
And Trump has publicly said Fauci made “a lot of mistakes,” as IJR reported.
During an interview on Fox News, Trump said, “Dr. Fauci is a nice man, but he’s made a lot of mistakes.”
He continued, “But a lot of them said, ‘Don’t wear a mask, don’t wear a mask.’ Now they are saying ‘wear a mask.’ So a lot of mistakes were made, a lot of mistakes.”
Addressing his lack of media appearances, Fauci said, “I have a reputation, as you probably have figured out, of speaking the truth at all times and not sugar-coating things.”
“And that may be one of the reasons why I haven’t been on television very much lately,” he added.
Still, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said any claim that officials were trying to discredit Fauci “couldn’t be further from the truth.”
“Dr. Fauci and the president have always had a very good working relationship,” she added.
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