A group of House Republicans led by Rep. Chip Roy of Texas are calling on Speaker Nancy Pelosi to direct the committees of jurisdiction to subpoena multiple public health officials — including Dr. Anthony Fauci — to gain answers on the origin of the coronavirus.
In a letter sent to Pelosi on Tuesday, the lawmakers said that they have unsuccessfully attempted to seek information from multiple officials about the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases’ (NIAID) funding they believe may have been used for gain-of-function research, which can make viruses more infectious.
The group argued that the information is critical for providing oversight and gaining information to prevent future pandemics, noting that the Intelligence Community’s report on the deadly virus’ origin was inconclusive,
“Unfortunately, Members have attempted to get answers from public health officials to no avail. Officials, such as Dr. Fauci, have misled the public about the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) funding of gain-of-function research,” they wrote.
“Similarly, the Biden Administration’s supposed efforts to get answers on COVID-19’s origins were unhelpful as its Intelligence Community declassified report was inconclusive.”
The lawmakers raised concerns that taxpayer dollars may have been funneled to the Wuhan Institute of Virology through non-governmental organization EcoHealth, which they fear may have been used to fund gain-of-function research.
In the letter, the lawmakers argued that Pelosi should urge her committee chairs to subpoena those who may have played a role in “approving, conducting, or funding gain-of-function or related research.”
In addition to Rep. Roy, Reps. Mike Johnson (La.), Jody Hice (Ga.), Scott Perry (Pa.), Michael Cloud (Texas), Bill Posey (Fla.), Randy Weber (Texas), Mo Brooks (Ala.), Andy Harris (Md.), Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Greg Steube (Fla.), Louie Gohmert (Texas), Dan Bishop (N.C.) and Robert Aderholt (N.C.) signed onto the letter.
Meanwhile Fauci said the comments he made on whether it would be safe to gather for Christmas have been “misrepresented.”
This comes after Fauci said Sunday it would be “too soon to tell” if people can gather for Christmas amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“I will be spending Christmas with my family. I encourage people, particularly the vaccinated people who are protected, to have a good, normal Christmas with your family,” he said Monday.
“I also said something over the weekend that was taken completely out of context. I was asked what could we predict for this winter, for like December and Christmas,” Fauci said. “I said we don’t know because we’ve seen slopes that went down and then came back up.”
Would it be OK if “we can gather for Christmas, or is it just too soon to tell?” he was asked Sunday.
“You know … It’s just too soon to tell,” said Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical adviser to President Joe Biden. “We’ve just got to [concentrate] on continuing to get those numbers down and not try to jump ahead by weeks or months and say what we’re going to do at a particular time.”
Those comments drew backlash on social media and in the press by Republicans and critics of Fauci.