Political Editors / March 15, 2022

In Brief: How Fact-Finding Fauci Led to My Cancellation

The inside story of how Forbes fired columnist Adam Andrzejewski for asking questions.

“Dr. Anthony Fauci is the most highly compensated federal employee and the most visible,” writes Adam Andrzejewski. “So, it’s incumbent upon all of us to give him oversight.” Andrzejewski isn’t just some random blogger, either; he’s the founder of OpenTheBooks.com, an oversight group that has filed tens of thousands of Freedom of Information Act requests regarding government actions and especially spending.

For that work, Andrzejewski was brought on as a regular contributor to Forbes in 2014, where he “published 206 investigations while writing an estimated quarter million words on the platform.” His targets were bipartisan, outing Joe Biden, Donald Trump, and plenty of others.

Over this nearly eight year period, my articles were a-political and used hard data to fact-check Republicans, Democrats, and unelected bureaucrats. Since 2019, I published 112 articles for 13,031,558 views — an average of 116,353 views per investigation.

But then he started asking questions about Fauci.

In 2020, I published 36 investigations at Forbes and the editors chose 26 for special showcase on the platform, a designation called “Editors’ Pick.”

The first piece I published in 2021 broke national news that Dr. Fauci was the most highly compensated federal employee and even out-earned the president, four-star generals, and 4.3 million colleagues. That piece alone has 900,000+ views.

However, none of the 56 articles I published during 2021-2022 received an “Editors’ Pick” designation.

Something changed at Forbes after I wrote about Dr. Anthony Fauci.

What did he write? He questioned Fauci’s salary and financial disclosures, which Fauci himself told the Senate were “public knowledge.” That wasn’t true, said Andrzejewski: “In fact, Fauci’s financials were not available and I had firsthand knowledge.”

After extensive digging and overcoming NIH foot-dragging, Andrzejewski discovered that Fauci and his wife, Christine Grady, chief bioethicist at NIH, are worth more than $10.4 million, and they rake in major money for a lot of things. Andrzejewski’s reporting held up under scrutiny, even from the National Institutes of Health, which found only minor semantics corrections to complain about.

Nevertheless, it seems that pressure from NIH got Andrzejewski cut from Forbes’s lineup.

Of course, the real purpose of the NIH’s email wasn’t to correct my work.

Two directors, two bureau chiefs, and two top PR officers didn’t send an email to the Forbes’ chief on a Sunday morning because they wanted to correct the record about Fauci’s travel reimbursements.

They sent that email to subliminally send a message: We don’t like Andrzejewski’s oversight work, and we want you to do something about it.

Unfortunately, Forbes folded quickly.

Within 24 hours of the NIH email to Randall Lane, my regular Forbes editor called and announced new rules. Forbes barred me from writing about Fauci and mandated pre-approval for all future topics.

Then, Forbes went silent and terminated my column roughly 10 days later on January 28.

But Forbes didn’t stop there, further bowing to Saint “I Am Science” Fauci:

On the day Forbes cancelled me, the editors bent the knee. A new piece on Fauci published: “Fauci’s Portrait Will Soon Hang In The Smithsonian.”

Of course, the article was designated an Editors’ Pick.

Read the whole thing here.

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