“What the White House has done, among other things, is basically kept Fauci off television. ‘Face the Nation’ host Margaret Brennan told viewers she’s been trying to book him for three months.”
Trump White House slams Fauci, cancels his TV appearances
July 14, 2020
By Howard Kurtz | Fox News
The escalating warfare between President Trump and Anthony Fauci may have an immediate impact on the pandemic that is increasingly devastating our country.
Behind the scenes, the president hasn’t spoken to Fauci in more than a month.
Make no mistake, the president is the decision-maker and Fauci is a medical expert who, by his own account, is not in charge of setting policy.
Still, the 79-year-old doctor, who has been part of the government’s infectious disease agency since the Reagan administration, is widely respected, and part of his job is to work on a vaccine.
For an administration that has been accused of ignoring science, this seems somewhat petty. But there is an important clash here: Fauci casts himself as a truth-teller, and Trump wants to control the administration’s message, which is that the pandemic is under control and things will be getting better.
That, admittedly, is a harder sell when the number of new daily Covid-19 cases surged past 66,000 heading into the weekend, and Florida broke the single-day record for a state on Sunday with more than 15,000 cases. And it comes at a time when the president is pressuring governors, with a threatened funding cutoff, to physically reopen the nation’s schools in September.
What the White House has done, among other things, is basically kept Fauci off television. “Face the Nation” host Margaret Brennan told viewers she’s been trying to book him for three months.
The coronavirus task force briefings have become infrequent, handed off to Mike Pence and moved out of the White House, and Fauci’s schedule was such that he couldn’t attend the last one.
Instead, he’s been doing podcasts and print interviews, such as one in which he told the Financial Times: “I have a reputation, as you have probably figured out, of speaking the truth at all times and not sugar-coating things. And that may be one of the reasons why I haven’t been on television very much lately … ” Read more.