Reports have begun circulating that chief medical advisor to the coronavirus task force Dr. Anthony Fauci and Donald Trump are currently feuding over the proper approach to the coronavirus crisis.
Fauci came forward on Tuesday and destroyed the rumors, saying that “the idea of just pitting one against the other is just not helpful. I wish that would stop.”
The media has been attempting to sew discord between Fauci and Trump, claiming that Fauci’s recent absence from one of Trump’s daily briefings is an alarming sign that Trump is “silencing” the renowned immunologist.
Surgeon General Jerome Adams chimed in on the narrative on Tuesday, remarking that the White House task force “can’t win.”
“When one of us is missing, the media asks where is Dr. Fauci, where is Dr. Adams, where is Dr. Birx. But when we’re all up there together, everyone says we’re not modeling good behavior,” Adams told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt.
Fauci also criticized the media spin on his interactions with Trump. “The president has listened to what I’ve said and to the other people who are on the task force have said. When I’ve made recommendations, he has taken them.”
“He has never countered, overwritten me. The idea of just pitting one against the other is not helpful. I wish that would stop and that we’d look ahead at the challenge we have to get over this thing,” Fauci concluded.
Against medical advice
Donald Trump began signaling that the nationwide “stop the spread” effort would not last months as some have projected. He announced on Tuesday that he would like the economy to be back on track by Easter.
Media pundits immediately latched onto that statement and began using it as ammunition against the Trump administration, claiming that Trump had begun ignoring the advice of medical experts.
Fauci told Mary Walter and Vince Coglianese of WMAL’s “Mornings on the Mall” that “Obviously, this is something that’s under very intense discussion. What the president is trying to do is to balance the public health issues with the fact that this is having an enormous impact on the economy of the country, which may actually indirectly even cause a considerable amount of harm and difficultly, even health-wise.”
“So, it’s a delicate balancing act, which the president is trying to get it right, and we’re under very intense discussions right now about what the most appropriate timeline is and if we do modify it, how we modify it.”
Fauci appeared to agree with Trump’s assessment that a prolonged economic shutdown may not be the best way to address the coronavirus threat, explaining that “there’s a compromise. If you knock down the economy completely and disrupt infrastructure, you may be causing health issues, unintended consequences, for people who need to be able to get to places and can’t. You do the best you can.”