‘Oh My Goodness Gracious’: Fauci Recalls His Stunned Reaction When Trump Suggested Injecting Disinfectant to Fight Covid
The nation’s top infectious diseases expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, recalled his stunned reaction when he heard President Donald Trump make his infamous statement bizarrely suggesting that injecting disinfectant could be an effective treatment for the coronavirus.
Trump’s deranged, rambling discussion that pondered shining UV light inside patients and injecting them with disinfectants ignited a torrent of backlash for spreading harmful misinformation — and prompted Trump to disappear from the White House coronavirus task force briefings for weeks. Yesterday, on CBS’ Face the Nation, Fauci’s counterpart, Dr. Deborah Birx, was asked about her private thoughts in that infamous moment. She ducked the question and said she had pushed back on Trump at the time by telling him those ideas were “not a treatment.”
On Erin Burnett OutFront on Monday evening, the CNN host asked Fauci about the misinformation that was polluting the Trump White House messaging on the pandemic.
“So let me ask you, you’ve spoken out now, I know, Dr. Fauci, about some of your frustrations, about President Trump receiving information that you say was based on no data,” Erin Burnett said. “How bad was the information given to the president regularly?”
“The was a combination of good information and bad information. Unfortunately, the concept of anecdotal as opposed to science-driven information seemed to prevail,” Fauci said. “I took no great pleasure out of contradicting the president, but I had to get out just to maintain my own integrity but also to stand up for science that the data did not show what they were claiming. Anecdotes are okay to give you the spurring on to take a look at a scientific approach. But to be ruled by anecdote is folly.”
“Right, and that obviously is what happened, right? We heard it. There was the ingesting bleach. There is no anecdote on that. That one was just beyond the pale,” Burnett noted. “Can I ask you, when he said that — Dr. Birx obviously was unfortunately there. What went through your mind when he said that?”
“I just said, oh, my goodness gracious, I could just see what’s going to happen,” Fauci explained. “You’re going to have people who hear that from the president and they’re going to start doing dangerous and foolish things, which is the reason why, immediately. those of us who were not there said, ‘This is something you should not do.’ Be very explicit. The CDC came out, I think, the next day and put in one of their publications ‘Do not do this.'”
Watch the video above, via CNN.
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