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Fauci says ‘levels of vitriol’ in House hearing ‘really quite unfortunate’

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Former White House chief medical adviser Anthony Fauci said the “levels of vitriol” in the county and in Congress, particularly Tuesday’s incident with Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), is “really quite unfortunate.”

Facui joined CNN’s Kaitlan Collins to discuss his Monday testimony before the House Oversight and Accountability Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic. He was the face of the Trump administration’s COVID-19 response while leading the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

“I have testified literally hundreds of times over the last 40 years over Congress, and there’s always been differences of opinion, differences of ideology, criticisms and things like that,” Fauci said.

“But the level of vitriol that we see now, just in the country in general, but actually played out during this hearing, was really quite unfortunate. Because the purpose of hearings [is] to try and figure out how we can do better so that next time, if and when we are faced with a pandemic, we’d be better prepared and we could benefit,” he continued.

Fauci testified before the committee Monday for the first time since retiring. He said his goal is to help leaders identify mistakes that were made during the COVID-19 pandemic and correct them for the future.

“That’s not what we saw today, as shown by the clip you showed with Marjorie Taylor Greene,” Fauci said. “I mean, that was nothing about trying to do better, unfortunately.”

During the hearing, Greene refused to recognize him as a doctor, referring to him instead as “Mr. Fauci.” She questioned Fauci on why the American people “deserve to be abused” by him and said, “You’re not ‘Dr.,” you’re ‘Mr. Fauci’ in my few minutes.”

Fauci told the committee and Collins that he and his family still receive death threats for his role in the nation’s response to the pandemic. He said there’s a pattern with the threats, whether it’s Fox News or “somebody in the Congress” that alleges he is responsible for widespread death from COVID-19.

“So, that’s the reason why I’m still getting death threats, when you have performances like that unusual performance by Marjorie Taylor Greene in today’s hearing,” he said. “Those are the kinds of things that drive up the death threats, because there are a segment of the population out there that believe that kind of nonsense.”

Tags Anthony Fauci COVID COVID-19 pandemic House Oversight and Accountability Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic Kaitlan Collins Marjorie Taylor Greene

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