Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden slammed President Donald Trump for his repeated attacks on Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Mr. Biden called a lid earlier in the day to prepare for Thursday’s final presidential debate but his campaign released a statement, saying the American people are “sick of your lies.”
“Mr. President, you’re right about one thing: the American people are tired,” Biden said. “They’re tired of your lies about this virus. They’re tired of watching more Americans die and more people lose their jobs because you refuse to take this pandemic seriously. Now, more than ever, we need a leader to bring us together, put a plan in place, and beat this virus — but you have proven yourself yet again to be incapable of doing that.”
Earlier on Monday, Mr. Trump claimed on a campaign call that people are tired of hearing about the coronavirus pandemic and slammed Fauci as “a disaster” and the scientists as “idiots”.
“People are tired of hearing Fauci and all these idiots, these people, these people that have gotten it wrong. Fauci is a nice guy, he’s been here for 500 years, he called every one of them wrong,” Trump said. “Every time he goes on television there’s always a bomb. But there is a bigger bomb if you fire him. But Fauci is a disaster. I mean, this guy, if I listened to him, we would have 500,000 deaths.”
He went on to claim, without evidence, that if Fauci was in charge of the handling of the pandemic, more than half a million people would be dead in the United States.
Fauci responded to Mr. Trump’s attacks late Monday, dismissing them as a “distraction”.
“I would prefer not to comment on that and just get on with what we are really trying to do and what we are trying to do is to protect the health and welfare and safety of the American people predominantly, and ultimately, of the world,” he said. “[Addressing the virus is] the only thing I really care about. That other stuff, it’s like in ‘The Godfather’: Nothing personal, strictly business as far as I’m concerned.”
Mr. Trump’s attacks come following Fauci’s appearance on CBS’ “60 Minutes” where the doctor said he was not surprised the President got the virus.