Dr. Anthony Fauci has defended the use of dangerous gain-of-function research while mocking the censorship of those who raised concerns that the pandemic originated from a lab leak in Wuhan, China.
Fauci, the former director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), made the astonishing claims during a Thursday interview with Fox News.
Speaking with Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto, Fauci, Democrat President Joe Biden’s former chief medical advisor, tried to argue in defense of gain-of-function research, which is illegal in America.
“If you shut off all gain of function research… Did you get the flu shot this year, Neil?” Fauci said to Cavuto.
“If you did, and you got it from an influenza vaccine, that was gain-of-function that made that influenza vaccine.
“That’s what people don’t understand.”
Fauci twice suggested that he should be “taken out of this” by arguing that “I’m a charged person.”
He went on to argue the case for dangerous gain-of-function research, which makes pathogens more deadly.
“The whole scientific community feels that you have to have some degree of being able to manipulate organisms,” Fauci claimed.
“When you do it, you have to do it carefully and under very controlled conditions.”
Throughout the interview, Fauci was careful not to define exactly what gain-of-function is.
He has previously tried to change the definition to cover his own culpability.
When asked if the risky research serves any value, Fauci stated, “It depends on what your definition of gain-of-function is.”
“Look at a whole array of virologists and scientists who do research that is absolutely critical for the health of the country,” Fauci added.
“Some of that involves manipulating organisms.
“You want to call it gain-of-function.
“It really is not, in many respects, but it needs to be very well-regulated.”
Fauci also mocked the idea that discussion of a potential Wuhan coronavirus lab leak was dismissed and censored.
He was responding to comments from House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) who suggested that Fauci bribed scientists into silence on the matter with a $9 million grant.
— House Judiciary GOP (@JudiciaryGOP) March 8, 2023
Jordan was referring to testimony earlier this month by Dr. Marty Makary, a professor at Johns Hopkins.
“I almost have to laugh at that, Neil. That’s totally bizarre,” Fauci responded.
“First of all, I wasn’t leaning totally strongly one way or the other.
“I’ve always kept an open mind.
“As the data evolved and evolutionary virologists looked at the data, it looked more likely it was a natural occurrence from an animal reservoir.”
“I have always kept a completely open mind that it could be one or the other,” Fauci claimed.
“Quite frankly, the evidence weighs more likely towards one, namely a natural occurrence.
“The other absolutely preposterous thing that Jim Jordan said was that we gave the investigators a $9 million bribe to change their mind,” Fauci further stated.
“Is he kidding me?
“They put in a grant about a year and a half before this all happened.
“The grant was reviewed by a peer review and put before an independent council and approved before the meeting even took place.
“So to assume that they were getting a $9 million grant because of the fact that we tried to get them to change their mind is beyond ludicrous.
“Beyond ludicrous,” Fauci asserted.
Earlier this week, Republican Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) accused Fauci, along with other scientists working with him at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) of engaging in an “elaborate cover-up” of the lab origin of the coronavirus pandemic.
Paul alleged that they covered up the origins in order to hide their own involvement.