The chief epidemiologist said more lives could have been saved if the quarantine measures had been introduced earlier.
US President Donald Trump retweeted a post calling for the resignation of the country’s chief epidemiologist, Dr. Anthony Fauci after he said that more lives could have been saved if the country had quickly introduced quarantine measures for the coronavirus.
Trump retweeted a post by a former Republican Congressional candidate who quoted the words of an epidemiologist from a Sunday TV interview, accompanied by a comment that “it’s time to fire Fauci.”
In the past, the President has repeatedly retweeted critical comments without speaking out himself. The retweet sparked rumors that Trump is beginning to lose patience with the popular scientist and may dismiss him.
The White House has yet to comment on whether Trump is happy with Fauci’s work.
Fauci became a prominent figure due to his leadership role in the fight against the coronavirus. He has repeatedly corrected or refuted Trump’s statements on various scientific issues, including the effectiveness of the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine for the treatment of coronavirus.
In a Sunday interview with CNN’s State of the Union program, Fauci was asked about a New York Times article that described warnings about the coronavirus sent to the White House early in the pandemic. The scientist admitted that if the country had been closed earlier, more lives could have been saved, but noted that some factors influenced the development of the situation.
“Of course, it would be good if we had more head start, but I don’t think we can say that this is the situation right now because of one factor,” he said.
After these words, Fauci, who had previously been attacked by the far-right because he corrected Trump, received a new wave of criticism.
Trump, in several Sunday tweets, also criticized the New York Times article, calling it “fake.”
Last week, during the daily briefing of the working group on coronavirus, Trump intervened, not allowing Fauci to answer a question about hydroxychloroquine.
Fauci, 79, has been the head of the Institute for the study of allergic and infectious diseases since 1984. He worked under both Republican and Democratic administrations. In 2008, President George W. Bush awarded him the Medal of Freedom.