Dr. Anthony Fauci is acting more like a "Democratic Party activist in a white lab coat" than an actual scientist or doctor, Sen. Tom Cotton said Monday, while slamming the famous virologist for his changing statements on the theory that a laboratory leak caused the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.
"Why doesn’t he tell us what science, what data backs up the Biden administration's stupid mandate for masks in airports and airplanes?" the Arkansas Republican said on Fox News' "Fox and Friends." "Are you more likely to get coronavirus in an airport than a shopping mall? Or an airplane with its massive filtration systems? Is it really necessary to kick off a family with an autistic child who can’t wear a mask peacefully for an entire airplane?"
He accused Fauci of not having the evidence to support such mandates, based on data and science, and said the doctor and Facebook should not be allowed to decide what can be said about the virus, referring to emails between Fauci and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg about how to present the message.
Cotton's slams come after Fauci said in a New York Times podcast airing Monday that his family has been threatened and he's working to deal with the "craziness" of the attacks being made against him.
He also insisted that it is "essential as a scientist" to have an evolving opinion and to make recommendations based on data as it comes out.
"That's the reason why I say people who then criticize me about that are actually criticizing science," he said. "The people who are giving the ad hominems are saying, 'Ah, Fauci misled us. First, he said no masks, then he said masks. Well, let me give you a flash. That's the way science works. You work with the data you have at the time. It was not a change because I felt like flip-flopping. It was a change because the evidence changed, the data changed."
But Cotton on Monday accused Fauci, the director of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, of being more concerned about protecting the agency's reputation and his own name than telling the truth.
"He seemed from the very beginning to be more concerned about protecting his own agency's reputation and his reputation and his friends in the science world, to include the scientists in this very lab and Wuhan, which his agency indirectly funded with hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars," said Cotton.
The senator said Fauci was more concerned with covering himself than with "being open and honest about what China was up to and what we didn't know because of China's deceitfulness.
"From the very beginning, the Democrats saw this pandemic as a way to defeat the former president in the election last year, and anything he said or I said was rejected by the science even if it was proven correct in retrospect," Cotton concluded.
Fauci was a key member of former President Donald Trump's coronavirus task force and now serves as President Joe Biden's medical advisor on COVID.
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