Trump refers to Fauci as a ‘disaster’ and says it would be a ‘bomb’ if he fired him

Posted on October 20, 2020, 6:21 pm
3 mins

On Monday, President Donald Trump berated Dr. Anthony Fauci during a phone call with campaign staff, referring to the infectious disease specialist as a “disaster” and saying every time he appears on television there is a “bomb,” but there would be “a bigger bomb if you fire him,” according to a recording of the call obtained by NBC News.

“People are tired of hearing Fauci and all these idiots — these people, these people that have gotten it wrong,” Trump said. “Fauci’s a nice guy. He’s been here for 500 years. He called every one of them wrong. And he’s like this wonderful guy, a wonderful sage telling us how” to respond to the pandemic.

“If I listened to him, we’d have 500,000 deaths,” Trump continued, adding seconds later, “If we listened to him, we’d have 700-800,000 deaths right now.”

Trump was referring to Fauci’s previous comments on wearing masks and minimizing travel from China as examples of supposedly bad advice. “And yet, we keep him,” Trump told those on the call. “Every time he goes on television, there’s always a bomb, but there’s a bigger bomb if you fire him.”

Trump’s anger comes after Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was asked whether he was shocked that the president caught Covid-19 during an interview with CBS News’ “60 Minutes” that was aired on Sunday night.

“Absolutely not. I was worried that he was going to get sick when I saw him in a completely precarious situation of crowded, no separation between people, and almost nobody wearing a mask,” Fauci said. “When I saw that on TV, I said, ‘Oh, my goodness. Nothing good can come outta that, that’s gotta be a problem.’ And then sure enough, it turned out to be a superspreader event.”

Fauci was pointing to the Rose Garden news conference in late September at which Trump declared that he was nominating Amy Coney Barrett to serve as a Supreme Court justice. A number of people who were at the event, including the President himself, later tested positive for Covid-19.

Fauci said during the interview that Trump “sometimes equates wearing a mask with weakness,” which the doctor said was nonsensical. He said he believes Trump’s dismissal of his recommendations regarding the Covid-19 pandemic has more to do with making a statement than being “anti-science.”

“I think deep down, he believes in science. If he didn’t, he would not have entrusted his health to the very competent physicians at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center,” Fauci said about Trump’s recent admission to the hospital in order to be treated for Covid.

Report by Waeed Khan

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