Home GOP asks Fauci and dozens of well being officers to testify in investigation into Covid origins

Home Republicans have requested former White Home chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony to testify earlier than Congress as they launch a brand new investigation into the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The GOP leaders of the Choose Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic and Committee on Oversight and Accountability sent a letter to Fauci on Monday requesting a transcribed interview. Fauci mentioned in November that he would cooperate with any oversight listening to within the Republican-led Home.

“If there are oversight hearings I completely will cooperate absolutely and testify earlier than the Congress,” Fauci told reporters during his final briefing at the White House. “I’ve no bother testifying — we are able to defend and clarify every little thing that we have mentioned.”

Fauci, one of many nation’s prime infectious illness consultants, was the general public face of the U.S. pandemic response through the Trump and Biden administration. He stepped down from his posts on the White Home and on the helm of the Nationwide Institute of Allergy and Infectious Ailments in December.

Home Republicans additionally despatched letters requesting testimony from EcoHealth Alliance President Dr. Peter Daszak and former National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins. EcoHealth Alliance supplied funding, which originated at NIH, to the Wuhan Institute of Virology to review coronaviruses.

The inspector normal on the Well being and Human Providers Division discovered that EcoHealth Alliance obtained about $8 million in funding from NIH throughout 2014 via 2021, according to a report published last month. About $600,000 of that cash went on to the Wuhan Institute of Virology to review the menace posed by bat coronaviruses.

The research of bat coronaviruses on the virology institute in Wuhan, China, town the place the pandemic first started, has raised suspicions amongst some scientists and investigators that Covid-19 may have escaped from a lab. However Fauci, Collins and lots of others have maintained {that a} pure origin by which the virus spilled over from bats via an intermediate animal into folks is extra possible.

“The huge proof from different views says no, this was a naturally occurring virus,” Collins advised CNBC’s “Squawk Field” in 2021. “To not say that it couldn’t have been beneath research secretly on the Wuhan Institute of Virology and acquired out of there, we do not learn about that. However the virus itself doesn’t have the earmarks of getting been created deliberately by human work.”

In 2021, President Joe Biden ordered U.S. intelligence companies to provide their analysis on how the pandemic began. 4 companies assessed with low confidence that the pandemic started via pure publicity, whereas one assessed it was the results of a lab accident. Three different companies couldn’t agree on both rationalization.

Home Republicans on Monday additionally sent a letter to Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines requesting categorised briefings with seven intelligence and regulation enforcement companies together with the Central Intelligence Company, Protection Intelligence Company, Nationwide Safety Company and Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Additionally they despatched a letter to Well being Secretary Xavier Becerra requesting interviews with greater than two dozen U.S. well being officers.

Republicans, who gained management of the Home with a slender margin in final November’s midterms, had vowed to launch a number of investigations into the pandemic’s origins, the federal response, and the way taxpayer cash was spent.

“This investigation should start with the place and the way this virus took place in order that we are able to try to predict, put together or forestall it from occurring once more,” Rep. Brad Wenstrup, R-Ohio, chair of Choose Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic, said in a statement.


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