President Donald Trump characterized White House coronavirus task force member Dr. Anthony Fauci as “a little bit of an alarmist” during a “Fox News Sunday” interview with anchor Chris Wallace.
The White House denied allegations last week that it has sent “anonymous” opposition research on Dr. Fauci to media outlets in an effort to discredit him, and the president reportedly rebuked White House trade advisor Peter Navarro for writing a USA Today op-ed criticizing the coronavirus task force member.
Likely referring to Navarro as “one man from my administration,” Trump reaffirmed that denial after Wallace brought up the issue.
“Why on earth would your administration be involved in a campaign at this point to discredit Dr. Fauci, who is the nation’s top infectious disease expert?” Wallace asked.
“Because we’re not,” Trump said. “If one man from my administration doesn’t like him because he made a few mistakes — look, Dr. Fauci said, ‘Don’t wear a mask.’ Dr. Fauci told me not to ban China, it would be a big mistake. I did it over and above his recommendation. Dr. Fauci then said, ‘You saved tens of thousands of lives’ — more than that. He said, ‘You saved tens of thousands of lives.’”
“Dr. Fauci’s made some mistakes,” he continued. “But I have a very good — I spoke to him yesterday at length. I have a very good relationship with Dr. Fauci.”
Wallace then showed Trump a “series of statements, so-called mistakes that Dr. Fauci had made” put out by White House social media director Daniel Scavino.
“Dr. – Dr. – ‘Dr. Faucet,’ which shows him as a leaker and an alarmist,” said the Fox News anchor.
“Well, I don’t know that he’s a leaker …” said Trump.
“Why, why would you do that?” asked Wallace.
“He’s a little bit of an alarmist. That’s OK. A little bit of an alarmist,” Trump responded.
After Wallace questioned him on the point, Trump said, “Dr. Fauci at the beginning – and again, I have a great relationship with him. I spoke with him at length yesterday. Dr. Fauci at the beginning said, ‘This will pass. Don’t worry about it. This will pass.’ He was wrong. Dr. Fauci said, ‘Don’t ban China. Don’t ban China.’ I did. He then admitted that I was right.”
The Fox News anchor then recited several “mistakes” the president had made on coronavirus response, such as claiming that the virus was under control in January and February and that it would “disappear.”
“I’ll be right eventually,” Trump insisted. “I will be right eventually. You know I said, ‘It’s going to disappear.’ I’ll say it again.”
“But does that – does that discredit you?” Wallace asked.
“It’s going to disappear and I’ll be right. I don’t think so,” said Trump. “You know why? Because I’ve been right probably more than anybody else.”
Author: Scott Morefield
Source: Daily Caller: Trump Calls Dr. Fauci ‘A Little Bit Of An Alarmist’