Jordan’s attention-seeking attack against Fauci as he testified before Congress went viral this week when Jordan made baseless accusations claiming the government censors medical professionals who don’t agree with Fauci. After the false charge, Fauci sternly responded to Jordan, saying, “You’re making this a personal thing.” Jordan interrupted, saying he was not, causing Fauci to reply, “That is exactly what you’re doing.”
"You're making this a personal thing…that is exactly what you're doing."
Dr. Fauci fires back at Rep. Jim Jordan in heated exchange before Coronavirus Select Subcommittee: "We're not talking about liberties—we're talking about a pandemic that has killed 560,000 Americans." pic.twitter.com/UYXaj03mx4
— ABC News (@ABC) April 15, 2021
On Sunday, CNN’s Dana Bash brought the heated exchange up to Fauci, who said he doesn’t “enjoy those kinds of confrontations.”
Fauci explained that Jordan’s point about Covid-19 mitigation efforts such as wearing masks and not gathering in large groups are not “about liberties that were being restricted” as the congressman charged, it’s about saving lives.
“This has nothing to do with liberties. We’re talking about the fact that 560,000 people in our country have died,” Fauci said. “We’re talking about 60 to 70,000 new infections per day. That’s the issue. This is a public health issue. It’s not a civil liberties issue.”
Fauci also addressed vaccine hesitancy among Republicans. According to a recent Quinnipiac poll, 45 percent of Republicans say they do not plan on getting vaccinated.
The doctor explained his “frustration” with Republicans who rail against the protective measures and restrictions while at the same time refusing to take a remedy that would mostly offset the need for those same measures.
“It is quite frustrating because the fact that one may not want to get vaccinated—in this case, a disturbingly large proportion of Republicans—only actually works against where they want to be,” Fauci said.
Fauci continued, “They [Republicans] want to be able to say these restrictions that are put on by public health recommendations are things that they’re very concerned about. We’re all very concerned about that. We share that concern.”
He concluded, “It’s almost paradoxical that on the one hand, they want to be relieved of the restrictions but on the other hand, they don’t want to get vaccinated. It just almost doesn’t make any sense.”