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Rand Paul, Fauci Fight Over Face Masks 'Just Theater' After COVID Vaccination

Rand Paul, Fauci Fight Over Face Masks 'Just Theater' After COVID Vaccination
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By    |   Thursday, 18 March 2021 05:37 PM

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., went off on Dr. Anthony Fauci at a testy Senate hearing Thursday, charging the coronavirus expert’s continued use of masks in public after he was fulling vaccinated is “just theater.”

In a combative exchange, Paul pressed Fauci about the efficacy of masks— and a frustrated Fauci insisted COVID variants are a problem.

“You’re telling everybody to wear a mask, whether they’ve had an infection or a vaccine,” Paul said, the Washington Post reported.

“What I’m saying is: They have immunity, and everybody agrees they have immunity,” he continued. “What studies do you have that people that have had the vaccine or have had the infection are spreading the infection? If we’re not spreading the infection, isn’t it just theater? … You’ve had the vaccine, and you’re wearing two masks. Is that just theater?”

Paul was referencing a study that suggests there is immunity after an infection or vaccine.

“No it’s not,” Fauci shot back, adding, “Here we go again with the theater. Let’s get down to the facts.”

“The studies that you quote… look at in vitro examination of memory immunity, which in their paper, they specifically say this does not necessarily pertain to the actual protection,” he argued. “It’s in vitro.”

"When you talk about reinfection and you don't keep in the concept of variants, that's an entirely different ballgame. That’s a good reason for a mask," Fauci said.

The infectious disease expert pointed to a South African study by Johnson and Johnson that found those who had been infected with the "wild-type" COVID-19, meaning the original strain, had "no protection" when exposed to variants.

"I agree with you that you very likely would have protection from wild-type for at least six months," Fauci continued. 

Paul insisted there was "no evidence" of significant reinfections of COVID-19 after either the infection itself or COVID vaccine, adding he didn’t believe there had been any hospitalizations after the two-week period following full vaccination. 

"You’re not hearing what I’m saying about variants. We’re talking about wild type versus variants," Fauci responded.

But Paul pushed back, asking, “What study has found reinfection with severe symptoms with variants?”

“You’re making policy based on conjecture,” Paul said. “You've been vaccinated and you parade around in two masks for show. You're defying everything we know about immunity by telling people to wear a mask that have been vaccinated.”

"You want to get rid of vaccine hesitancy?,” Paul said. “Tell them they can quit wearing their mask after they get a vaccine… instead of telling them the nanny state's going to be there for three more years and you’ve got to wear a mask forever. People don't want to hear it and there's no science behind it."

"If you have immunity you’re wearing a mask to give comfort to others. You’re not wearing a mask because of any science," Paul declared.

A study by the New England Journal of Medicine found that all three vaccines showed significantly reduced efficacy against the South Africa B.1.351 variant.

The Food and Drug Administration has told drugmakers they will need to prove the vaccine produces a strong immune response against variants, Fox News reported.

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Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., went off on Dr. Anthony Fauci at a testy Senate hearing Thursday, charging the coronavirus expert's continued use of masks in public after he was fulling vaccinated is "just theater."...
randpaul, fauci, covidvaccination
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2021-37-18
Thursday, 18 March 2021 05:37 PM
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