“Was the skunk at the picnic”


He repeatedly contradicted the President, Donald Trump even wanted to fire him: Now top immunologist Anthony Fauci has revealed details about the difficult collaboration in an interview.

In the corona pandemic, he was repeatedly the target of verbal attacks by Trump supporters and corona deniers. In an interview with the New York Times, the immunologist Anthony Fauci has now given his first glimpses of his work with the Trump administration.

Differences of opinion between the president and him had shown up early in the crisis, Fauci told the newspaper. When the number of cases increased in March in New York, for example, he warned of the scope of the development. However, the president had always turned his back on him, saying: “Well, it’s not that bad, right?”

Fauci says he contradicted the president. Nevertheless, the conversation was repeated in a similar form in the following months. “So there was a joke that I was the skunk at the picnic.”

Donald Trump: voted out, but still under discussion. (Source: Samuel Corum / imago images)

Dubious calls from strangers

He was also “very worried”, Fauci told the “New York Times” that Trump regularly received calls from strangers – Fauci suspects: from business. On their advice, Trump proposed drugs and methods to fight viruses, “without a scientific basis, based on anecdotes.”

Fauci publicly contradicted the now-elected president several times – for example when he announced that the pandemic would be as good as over with the start of the vaccinations. Trump has asked him again and again not to express himself so negatively. He should also “be more positive” and adopt a “positive attitude,” said the chief immunologist.

Fauci has headed the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984. He is internationally recognized as an authority in his field, and the 80-year-old has already served as an advisor to more than half a dozen presidents. He clashed with Donald Trump several times because of his stance on the corona pandemic. So much so that Trump announced in November that he wanted to fire Fauci from his Corona task force. That didn’t happen again because Trump lost the election.

Doctor: White House reacted too slowly

The immunologist is not the first scientist to comment on his work under Donald Trump. Doctor Deborah Birx, also part of the Corona task force, told the television broadcaster CBS that some in the White House had described the corona pandemic as a “hoax” and thus prevented timely intervention.

Birx also expressed concern about the validity of the data presented by Trump: “I’ve seen the President present statistics that I’ve never done.” So you know that “someone out there or someone inside” prepared other data for the president. But you don’t know who. This non-transparent handling of data contradicts their professional ethos.

Anthony Fauci will also continue to advise the new President Joe Biden as “Chief Medical Adviser”, while Deborah Birx is leaving the Corona task force.

In the USA, the number of confirmed corona infections has exceeded the 25 million mark, according to a data analysis by the Reuters news agency. More than 417,000 people have now died in the USA in connection with a corona infection.

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