Alexa Schwerha on November 28, 2022
- Dr. Anthony Fauci claimed to not remember key details during a deposition about social media censorship during the COVID-19 pandemic, people present told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
- Fauci reportedly defended lockdowns and made contradicting statements, they said.
- Fauci “conveniently denied recollection of most specifics- from emails to phone calls to individuals, including the Great Barrington Declaration and the scientists who wrote it, two of whom are our clients,” Jenin Younes, litigation counsel at New Civil Liberties Alliance told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Dr. Anthony Fauci claimed he could not remember details about his role monitoring online speech during the COVID-19 pandemic during a Nov. 23 deposition spearheaded by two Republican attorneys general, people present told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Fauci’s deposition came in response to a lawsuit filed by Republican Attorney General Jeff Landry of Louisiana and Republican Attorney General Eric Schmitt of Missouri against Biden administration officials for allegedly colluding with social media corporations to censor information about COVID-19. Reporters were not permitted inside the deposition and no public transcripts have been released.
Jenin Younes, litigation counsel at New Civil Liberties Alliance, told the DCNF that Fauci “conveniently denied recollection of most specifics- from emails to phone calls to individuals, including the Great Barrington Declaration and the scientists who wrote it, two of whom are our clients.”
“He was too busy running a six plus billion dollar a year institute, and overseeing the development of vaccines that saved countless lives, to be concerned with the [G]reat Barrington [D]eclaration or social media,” Younes said. “This is interesting given that there are emails he exchanged with Francis Collins in which they explicitly discussed ‘tak[ing] down’ the GBD and also dismissed it as ‘dangerous’ ‘nonsense.’”
The Great Barrington Declaration was an open letter published in October 2020 opposing strict COVID-19 regulations including lockdowns and social isolation. It was “was written from a global public health and humanitarian perspective, with special concerns about how the current COVID-19 strategies are forcing our children, the working class and the poor to carry the heaviest burden,” according to its website.
Landry tweeted that after seven hours of questioning, Fauci couldn’t “recall practically anything dealing with his Covid response!”
Younes tweeted after the deposition that Fauci defended lockdowns by claiming that China “‘successfully contained the virus” and called it “sheer arrogance.”
“It seemed to me he eschewed use of the word lockdown, knowing it’s unpopular, but seemed to be what he meant,” she said. “This is particularly interesting given that China’s latest round of lockdowns- which calls into question the motion that they initially were successful- has spurred large scale protests against Xi. If human rights or China’s questionable reliability when it comes to reporting covid deaths factored into Fauci’s assessment, he didn’t let on as much at the deposition.”
Jeffrey Tucker, founder of the Brownstone Institute, told the DCNF that it was “a little surprising” that Fauci claimed he “didn’t remember anything.”
“That he defended himself at every step is not surprising,” Tucker stated.
Fauci is the longtime National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease director and, as chief medical adviser to the president of the United States, was a major voice in America’s pandemic response. He announced in August, however, he would be stepping down from his government position.
Landry told the DCNF that “there are still many documents to review and depositions to conduct.” Former Press Secretary Jen Psaki and former Senior COVID-19 Advisor Andrew Slavitt are also expected to be questioned.
“But, we will continue pursuing the truth to ensure that Big Tech and Big Government are not allowed to censor free speech and violate the rights of American citizens,” he said.
Schmitt tweeted additional information regarding Fauci’s claims during the deposition which included defending lockdowns and claiming to know “the Lab Leak theory had merit.”
Schmitt also shared Fauci ordered a court reporter to wear a mask after sneezing.
“In short, nothing about the deposition suggested that Fauci is capable of acknowledging error, that he cares about human and civil rights, or that he is being honest with the American public about his role in suppressing dissenting voices, even from highly qualified scientists,” Younes said.
Tucker told the DCNF that “there is so much to learn about what happened over these two and a half nearly three years.”
“We’re just barely at the beginning,” he stated.
Schmitt and Fauci did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.
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