Now that President Joe Biden is in office, infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci has been quite open about what it was really like to work in the White House during Donald Trump’s presidency. Fauci was a member of Trump’s White House Coronavirus Task Force and often went head-to-head with the former president.
“I heard through the grapevine that there were people in the White House who got really surprised, if not offended, that I would dare contradict what the president said in front of everybody,” Fauci told The New York Times last month. “And I was, ‘Well, he asked me my opinion. What do you want me to say?'”
Fauci, who has since been named as Biden’s chief medical adviser (via CNN), said that he was regarded as “the skunk at the picnic” but that he never considered leaving his position — even after his wife suggested it. “Even if I wasn’t very effective in changing everybody’s minds, the idea that they knew that nonsense could not be spouted without my pushing back on it, I felt was important,” he explained.
Dr. Fauci worried about catching COVID-19 in the White House
Fauci added, “I think in the big picture, I felt it would be better for the country and better for the cause for me to stay, as opposed to walk away.”
In a recent interview, Fauci revealed that he was afraid of contracting COVID-19 at the White House while Trump was in office. A number of members of the Trump administration were notoriously lax about wearing masks and social distancing. Many of them — including Trump himself — contracted the virus after a ceremony at the White House Rose Garden which was regarded as “a superspreader event” (via CNN).
“I didn’t fixate on that, but it was in the back of my mind because I had to be out there, I mean, particularly when I was going to the White House every day when the White House was sort of a superspreader location,” Fauci told AXIOS on HBO. “That made me a little bit nervous.”
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