Catherine Mortensen / June 15, 2021

Growing Calls for Fauci to ‘Step Aside’

There is growing momentum on the Hill to hold bureaucrats, Big Tech, and China responsible.

Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) is calling for Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, to step aside and make himself available to Congress to answer questions about the origins of the deadly COVID virus. In a Capitol Hill news conference last week with Senators Roger Marshall (R-KS), Mike Braun (R-IN), Ron Johnson, (R-WI), and Roger Wicker (R-MS), Blackburn said Congress needs to know “exactly how he was in cahoots with Mark Zuckerberg and Big Tech.”

She also wants to know “if the American people heard some truth, but not the whole truth and nothing but the truth.”

With uncertainty still surrounding the exact origin of COVID-19, some social media companies and fact-checkers have had to reverse course on earlier positions to acknowledge that widely held beliefs were prematurely treated as fact.

In recent weeks, Facebook stopped censoring stories related to the Wuhan lab as the possible source of the COVID virus. Major news outlets have gone back and changed past headlines on some of their stories covering the lab leak theory.

The shift began with an announcement from President Joe Biden on May 26. Biden said U.S. intelligence officials narrowed their understanding of the COVID-19 origin story to two likely paths: the transmission of the virus from animal to human, and the possibility that the virus may have escaped from a lab before its spread began in Wuhan, China. Intelligence officials have “not reached a definitive conclusion” between the two scenarios, Biden said.

The lab leak theory was discussed in the early days of the virus’s spread but was quickly dismissed because it was coming from former President Donald Trump. In addition, Biden scuttled a Trump-era investigation into the origins of the virus.

Blackburn pointed to several examples of Big Tech censorship of this story:

  • YouTube blocked content that contradicted the official explanation coming from Beijing and the China-funded World Health Organization.

  • YouTube removed a video from medical doctors whose work questioned the value of the lockdowns.

  • Twitter locked down the account of a Chinese biologist who was said they were doing gain-of-function research at the Wuhan lab.

“We need to hold the Chinese Communist Party to account,” said Blackburn. “In addition, Big Tech has really stepped over the line on this one.”

Blackburn is calling on U.S. intelligence agencies to release the information that we have on the origins of the virus. “We need to start there to get to the bottom of it,” Blackburn concluded.

Senator Marshall, a medical doctor, said he’d been suspicious of a cover-up as early as January of 2020. He pointed to a letter signed by a group of scientists who rejected any possibility the virus could have come from the Wuhan lab.

“They totally ignored it,” Marshall said. “Then come to find out most of those scientists, if not all of them, were receiving some type of funding then and in the future from the National Institutes of Health. Our CDC sat there nodding their heads in agreement.”

Marshall noted that Big Tech not only censored anyone who attempted to report on this but shamed people who thought the virus could have come from a laboratory.

“And now we see in Dr. Fauci his emails that he appears to be in collusion with these Big Tech companies. Here we are 17 months later, and we still know almost nothing about where this virus came from.”

Marshall said in addition to holding China responsible, he wants the U.S. to be held accountable if we helped fund laboratories that led to the development of the virus.

“We’re never going to get to the bottom of this unless we stop this cover-up of the Wuhan lab leak,” Marshall concluded.

Senator Johnson noted that evidence supporting a potential lab leak has been hiding in plain sight for months.

“The fact that our federal agencies, under the direction of Anthony Fauci, have funded this type of research for years has been laying out there for months,” said Johnson.

“Shame on the media shame and social media for not paying attention to it and for completely ignoring it,” Johnson continued. “They are to blame for this 18-month-gap in exploring the true origin of the COVID virus. This will probably mean we’ll never get to the bottom of it. China has had 18 months to destroy this evidence. But make no doubt about it: China is guilty. They are culpable.”

Senator Wicker announced he is introducing legislation to prevent Big Tech companies from discriminating based on their own opinions. “This is a serious, grave threat to freedom and the open exchange of ideas under our Constitution,” Wicker said.

When asked by a reporter if an international approach to investigating COVID’s origins would be best, Blackburn said she prefers the standing committees of the U.S. Senate to take the lead but welcomed cooperation with our international allies.

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