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Politico Bends Over Backwards to Fawn Over Dr. Fauci, Smear His Critics

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Posted: Jun 04, 2021 9:15 PM
Politico Bends Over Backwards to Fawn Over Dr. Fauci, Smear His Critics

Source: AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Earlier this week, a massive dump of emails from Dr. Anthony Fauci was released, providing invaluable insight as well as damning evidence about the head of the NIAID. Yet a team over at Politico bent over backwards on Friday to defend Fauci and lament how "Attacks on Fauci grow more intense, personal and conspiratorial."

Here's the headers of "Six Bombshell Revelations from Fauci's Emails," as provided by Spencer:

1. Scientists told Fauci that COVID-19 might be engineered but he ignored them

2. Fauci was circulating articles on "gain of function" research on February 1, 2020

3. Fauci tattled on Ron DeSantis but stayed silent on Cuomo 

4. Fauci knew masks didn't work and told people not to wear them  

5. The Chinese penpals   

6. In March 2020, Fauci thought COVID would stop on its own without a vaccine     

In a piece that's over 1,500 words, written by both Natasha Korecki and Sarah Owermohle, with Erin Banco contributing, what revelations that are addressed are hardly objective. They all serve to paint Fauci as a sort of martyr, or at least sympathetic figure.

The piece even claims that the emails were "cherry-pick[ed]," implying nothing to see here, folks.

There is no mention that Fauci was told the virus was "potentially engineered." That is big, and an even bigger omission. It was not only Spencer who mentioned that in his reporting; Katie wrote an entire piece on it.

When it comes to gain-of-function research, that's as equally a smoking gun if there ever was one. Not only is Dr. Fauci a supporter of gain-of-function, he's written that conducting such research is worth a pandemic. Now, Fauci has changed his tune about whether gain-of-function occurred at all, to put his flip-flopping politely. But, in this glowing piece, this concern is just something Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), also a doctor, has thrown around. Not only is the senator a known critic of Fauci, which is how the piece exclusively portrays him as, he's also arguably the person most vindicated by the email revelations:

Paul was swift to accuse Fauci on Wednesday of knowledge of the Wuhan lab allegedly carrying out controversial “gain-of-function” studies, a field of research that alters viruses in a way that can make them more transmissible or help them hop to new hosts, such as humans.

Not only is Sen. Paul "perhaps Fauci’s most prominent bete noire on the Hill," he's also fundraising off of his exchanges with Fauci, and is one of many Republican lawmakers to call for the highest-paid doctor in the country to be fired. 

It really should not be news that a politician running for re-election would be fundraising. Yet this fact was nevertheless considered important enough to include in the sub headline.

There's no mention of Spencer's third and fifth points.

Perhaps the greatest defense of Fauci from the Politico piece, and other sympathetic sources, comes to addressing Spencer's fourth revelation.

From Politico:

And a round of conservatives, cherry-picking individual emails out of more than 3,000, argued that Fauci, who leads the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, had privately supported a theory that the virus leaked from a Chinese lab and lied about masks in an effort to amass political power. Neither was true. Fauci has said he thinks it’s more likely that the virus spread from animal to human but would not rule out a lab leak, and while he initially downplayed the need for masks, it was, he said, out of fear that medical professionals would lose access to them if the public began panic purchasing.  

There's no mention of how Fauci went from explicitly telling people not to go out and buy masks and expressing "fear" to do with "panic purchasing" to wearing multiple masks despite being fully vaccinated. 

Further, it's seriously underreported here that Fauci knew masks didn't actually work, something Spencer has consistently highlighted in his reporting

When it comes to vaccines, the piece mentions another nauseatingly generalized point which basically argues Fauci is right and everyone who says otherwise is wrong, including and especially Trump. Fauci is literally referred to as a "victim" here:

But in an ever-polarized nation, Fauci too has fallen victim to tribalism. His advocacy for mask wearing and social distancing — in the face of Trump’s opposition — was met by vocal detractors across the country, who launched anti-mask protests and demanded the economy reopen. His conservative predictions about the pace of vaccine development and the timeline for reopening the country led to criticism that his expertise had been dramatically overstated.

The authors may wish to consult a poll or too. It's not so much that "polariz[ation] is the issue, as it is that the American people are tired of Fauci, according to polls, which, it's worth emphasizing, came out before the emails came out. 

In a sentence, Politico is peddling in fake news. 

A public and polarizing figure is receiving verbal attacks? So what? Get over it. Come back to me when you have death threats to complain about, which Sen. Paul has received. Death threats against anyone are wrong, but for how much the authors want readers to sympathize with Dr. Fauci, I'm not seeing any mention of them here. 

If there ever was a puff piece about Dr. Fauci, this one is it. If you read one piece on such a man, this better not be it. For in Politico's eyes, Saint Fauci can do no wrong, and we know that that is not the case, far from it.