Biden asks Fauci to become his chief medical adviser
PLUS: Fauci apologizes for suggesting U.K. rushed vaccine
Dec 4, 2020
USA TODAY – Joe Biden told CNN on Thursday that he asked Dr. Anthony Fauci to become his chief medical adviser and part of his Covid-19 response team.
Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has been a top official dealing with the pandemic. But President Donald Trump sidelined him at points during the year after Fauci’s stark warnings about the importance of wearing masks, social distancing and halting large-scale gatherings.
“I asked him to stay on the exact same role he’s had for the past several presidents, and I asked him to be a chief medical adviser for me as well, and be part of the Covid team,” Biden said.
Fauci had told CBS News that he would meet Thursday Biden’s transition team to discuss the response to the coronavirus pandemic.
“I’m going to be meeting with them today, by Zoom,” Fauci told CBS News.
“So today will be the first day where there will be substantive discussions about the transition between me and the Biden team,” Fauci added. “I’m very pleased that today we’re having the first discussion about a number of things, vaccinations and things like that.”
The meeting comes after more than 273,000 Americans have died from COVID-19 and nearly 14 million have been infected, according to Johns Hopkins University.
The meeting with Fauci comes during a surge to more than 2,800 deaths per day, a figure eclipsing the deaths at Pearl Harbor and nearly matching the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says a coronavirus vaccine could come earlier than expected.
Biden supported Fauci throughout the campaign and transition as an expert who could be trusted for guidelines on how to combat the virus … Read more.
Fauci apologizes for suggesting U.K. rushed vaccine
Dec. 4, 2020
LONDON — Dr. Anthony Fauci has apologized after appearing to criticize the U.K.’s process for approving a Covid-19 vaccine, comments that ruffled British feathers in a week marked by displays of nationalistic excitement at being the first Western country to approve the rollout of a vaccine.
In a series of interviews, Fauci questioned the level of scrutiny the British regulators had given the authorization process of the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine, which was approved for widespread use in the U.K. on Wednesday.
Fauci even suggested that the process had been rushed after Britain became the first nation to formally approve the vaccine.
The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases told Sky News that U.K. authorities had analyzed the data from the vaccine “very quickly” and in a way that is much “less deep” than what the U.S. Food and Drug Administration was doing.
“The FDA in the United States, I think, everyone realizes globally is the gold standard of regulatory function,” he said.
Fauci later rowed back on his comments, telling the BBC that what he meant to say was that U.S. authorities do things differently than their British counterparts, not better, but his comments came out wrong.
“There really has been a misunderstanding and for that I’m sorry,” he told the broadcaster. “I do have great faith in both the scientific community and the regulatory community at the U.K.”
Speaking to Savannah Guthrie on TODAY, Fauci said Friday his remarks to Sky News were “taken out of context.”
“The Brits are good, they know what they’re doing, they’re really pros,” he said.
The U.K. Department of Health and Social Care confirmed to NBC News Friday that the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine was in the country … Read more.
The Latest: Fauci says ‘yes right on the spot’ to Biden
Dec 04, 2020 | WASHINGTON (AP):
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s chief infectious disease expert, says there was never a question that he would accept President-elect Joe Biden’s offer to serve as his chief medical officer and adviser on the coronavirus pandemic.
Fauci told NBC’s “Today” show on Friday, “I said yes right on the spot” after Biden asked him to serve during a conversation on Thursday.
As the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Fauci has served several presidents, Republican and Democratic. But during President Donald Trump’s administration, he has been largely sidelined as Trump gave rosy assessments of the virus and insisted it would fade away.
Fauci has urged rigorous mask-wearing and social distancing, practices that have not often been followed at the White House.
On Thursday, Biden said he will ask Americans to commit to 100 days of wearing masks as one of his first acts as president.
“I told him I thought that was a good idea,” Fauci told NBC.
HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON:
National Intelligence Director John Ratcliffe says foreign adversaries are using social media and other platforms to amplify allegations of voter fraud. But he won’t say which countries are using the issue to try to undermine public confidence in the U.S. democratic process.
President Donald Trump and his allies continue to mount new legal cases alleging voter fraud in battleground states since he lost the November presidential election to Joe Biden. But they have been losing in court. And Trump’s own attorney general has declared the Justice Department uncovered no widespread fraud.
Ratcliffe is a Trump loyalist. He says on CBS that U.S. intelligence agencies have no indication that any foreign adversary or criminal group had the ability to change vote results but that they are still analyzing all the information collected.
Ratcliffe told “CBS This Morning” on Friday that he plans to issue a report on foreign election interference in January.