Fauci Says He Was ‘Absolutely Not’ Surprised When Trump Got Infected With COVID-19

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, looks on as President Donald Trump delivers remarks about coronavirus vaccine development in the Rose Garden of the White Hous... Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, looks on as President Donald Trump delivers remarks about coronavirus vaccine development in the Rose Garden of the White House on May 15, 2020. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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October 19, 2020 7:39 a.m.
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Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the White House’s most prominent COVID-19 experts, said on Sunday that President Donald Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis wasn’t a surprise given how often the President openly disregards the dangers of holding large gatherings, such as his campaign rallies, and not wearing masks.

“Absolutely not,” Fauci said during a pre-taped interview when CBS medical correspondent Jon LaPook asked if he was surprised when Trump got sick, which ultimately landed the President in the hospital earlier this month.

“I was worried that he was going to get sick when I saw him in a completely precarious situation of crowded, no separation between people, and almost nobody wearing a mask,” the doctor continued. “When I saw that on TV, I said, ‘Oh my goodness. Nothing good can come outta that, that’s gotta be a problem.'”

“And then sure enough, it turned out to be a superspreader event,” he added.

However, Fauci also asserted that Trump does believe in science “deep down.”

“If he didn’t, he would not have entrusted his health to the very competent physicians at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center,” Fauci told LaPook, arguing that the President falsely casting doubt on health experts’ sobering assessments of the pandemic is more a “statement of strength” than actually being anti-science.

Asked if Trump downplaying the importance of wearing masks makes sense, the doctor replied, “Of course not.”

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TPM’s COVID-19 hub.
Josh Marshall’s Twitter List of Trusted Experts (Epidemiologists, Researchers, Clinicians, Journalists, Government Agencies) providing reliable real-time information on the COVID-19 Crisis.
COVID-19 Tracking Project (updated data on testing and infections in the U.S.).
Johns Hopkins Global COVID-19 Survey (most up to date numbers globally and for countries around the world).
Worldometers.info (extensive source of information and data visualizations on COVID-19 Crisis — discussion of data here).
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