After House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (D-CA) said a Republican-majority House would still conduct oversight over Dr. Anthony Fauci even if he resigned from his government positions in December, Fauci claimed he was not against oversight, but didn’t want to see it become “character assassination.”
McCarthy said that Fauci “owes the American people answers.”
Fauci said on CNN that he welcomed oversight but seemed to say that it had to be on his own terms.
“I believe oversight is a very important part of government structure, and I welcome it, and it can be productive. But what has happened up till now is more of a character assassination than it is oversight,” he said.
Happy to cooperate
He left the door open to cooperating with congressional oversight after his retirement, but suggested he would be resistant to it if his character were attacked.
“So, sure, I would be happy to cooperate, so long as we make it something that is a dignified oversight, which it should be, and not just bringing up ridiculous things and attacking my character. That’s not oversight,” he said.
Fauci has so far been able to evade any accountability for his part in allowing gain of function research in Wuhan that may have contributed to the COVID-19 pandemic, even going to far as to deny during congressional testimony that the research was gain of function although it met the definition perfectly.
Now it seems that his plan is to call any sort of scrutiny “character assassination” to get investigators to back off and go easy on him.
A lot to answer for
Fauci has been criticized for his heavy-handed approach to coronavirus restrictions and relying on mathematical models instead of historical and observational ones.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), also a medical doctor, called Fauci out for ignoring natural immunity to the virus after infection and for suspicious emails about the lab in Wuhan that Fauci tried to cover up early on in the pandemic.
Fauci has a lot to answer for, but has gotten a pass from Democrats. If Republicans take over, he is not likely to be so lucky.
I guess it’s a free country (sort of), and Fauci can say whatever he wants, but he may not be able to escape congressional scrutiny and accountability, even if he tries to label it “character assassination.”