Fauci Calls Senate Report On COVID-19 Origin ‘Really Unfortunate’

On Friday during “CNN Tonight,” White House Chief Medical Adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci called the interim report released by the minority oversight staff of the Senate Health Committee “really unfortunate.” The report highlights the mounting evidence that the COVID-19 virus may have escaped from a lab in China that was funded by the organization Fauci led.

Fauci made the comment to host Jake Tapper in reference to an October interim report on the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic released by the Republican-led minority oversight staff.

“I know there are still lots of questions about the origin of COVID,” Tapper began. “And obviously, the Chinese government has not exactly been transparent. So, it’s difficult to assess what happened.”

“There is a new interim report out from the top Republican on the Senate Health Committee,” he continued. “It’s an interim report, and it’s not from the Intelligence Committee, and it’s just from one party, not unanimous, not bipartisan. But this report does say that the COVID-19 pandemic was, ‘more likely than not, the result of a research-related incident.’”

“Have you seen the report?” Tapper asked. “What is your reaction?”

“Well, I haven’t read it carefully,” Fauci answered. “I’ve skimmed through it.”

After stating he only skimmed through the Senate’s analysis, Fauci proceeded to defend himself against the contents of the report by citing studies of his own.

“But I can tell you, Jake, that it’s really unfortunate because there are at least two very important, peer-reviewed, scientific publications most recently that completely diverge from the conclusions that came out in the report to which you’re referring,” Fauci claimed. “And these are studies that were done, published in high-ranked journals, Science journal, the medical journal, by a group of evolutionary virologists who just completely disagree with the conclusions that came out of the report that you just mentioned.”

The interim report released by the minority oversight staff analyzed the two hypothetical possibilities related to the origin of COVID-19: a “natural zoonotic” event or a “research-related incident.”

After analyzing the available data related to both hypotheses, including information related to the coronavirus research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, the staff concluded “that the COVID-19 pandemic was, more likely than not, the result of a research-related incident.”