Thursday, 9 Dec 2021

Fauci Says Trump Campaign Ad Uses His Words ‘Completely Out of Context’

Dr. Anthony S. Fauci said he wanted the Trump campaign to take down an advertisement that implied that he endorsed the administration’s coronavirus response.

By Sheryl Gay Stolberg

WASHINGTON — Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, whose blunt public health advice has frequently been at odds with President Trump, said on Tuesday that a Trump campaign ad quoted him “completely out of context” by incorrectly implying that he was praising the administration’s coronavirus response.

But in an interview, he said he saw no “rift” between him and the president.

The comments by Dr. Fauci, a career government scientist who has advised six presidents and has run the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984, were his sharpest criticism yet of the president, though he carefully framed them as an attack on the campaign, not Mr. Trump.

“That ad clearly implies strongly that I’m endorsing a political candidate, and I have not given them my permission to do that,” Dr. Fauci said, adding that in his five decades of public life, he had never been involved in partisan politics. “And in addition to that, the quote that they took is completely out of context.”

He also warned that the campaign “may turn off a lot of people” by airing an ad to which he is so vocally opposed.

The Trump campaign released the new ad last week, after the president was discharged from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center following treatment for Covid-19. The ad uses an interview clip to make it seem as though Dr. Fauci is praising the administration’s pandemic response.

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