Sen. Rand Paul requested that Attorney General Merrick Garland criminally investigate Dr. Anthony Fauci over Senate testimony in which President Joe Biden’s chief infectious disease expert said that the National Institutes of Health never funded gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which the Kentucky Republican says is a lie.
Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, insists that the NIH grants did not fund gain-of-function research at the Wuhan lab and has repeatedly defended U. S. funding going to bat coronavirus research in China. But he also admitted that he doesn’t actually know what the secretive Chinese lab has been doing.
At issue in Paul’s criminal referral is Fauci’s testimony before Congress on May 11, when he denied under oath that the NIH funded gain-of-function research at the Wuhan lab. Paul pointed to NIH grants going to the EcoHealth Alliance, which then provided funding to the Wuhan lab that a Trump State Department fact sheet contended carried out secretive gain-of-function experiments and worked with China’s military. At the time, Fauci told Paul: “The NIH has not ever and does not now fund gain-of-function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.”
After another back-and-forth with Fauci on Tuesday, during which the doctor repeatedly said the NIH funding approved for the Wuhan lab was not for gain-of-function research, Paul announced on Fox News that he would be sending a letter to the Justice Department over what he saw as false testimony by Fauci.