Dr. Anthony Fauci defended himself on Tuesday, saying he is “not misleading the American public under any circumstances” after President Donald Trump retweeted messages criticizing the nation’s top disease expert.
“I don’t even read them, so I don’t really want to go there. I just will continue to do my job no matter what comes out,” Fauci said when asked about the tweet on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” “Because I think it’s very important. We are in the middle of a crisis with regard to an epidemic, a pandemic. This is what I do. This is what I’ve been trained for my entire professional life and I’ll continue to do it.”
He added, “I have not been misleading the American public under any circumstances.”
In a series of tweets Monday night, Trump retweeted false claims, including one suggesting hydroxychloroquine was a cure for coronavirus and a tweet that called Fauci a “fraud.” Twitter took action on Tuesday and removed several tweets that were also retweeted by Donald Trump Jr., his son, and restricted the younger Trump’s account.
The Food and Drug Administration has revoked emergency use authorization for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine for the treatment of Covid-19, saying they do not meet “the statutory criteria” for emergency use authorization as they are unlikely to be effective in treating the virus based on the latest scientific evidence.
Although Trump has maintained that he has a good relationship with Fauci, he has often sought to downplay his warnings against reopening the country too rapidly. The President has called Fauci “a little bit of an alarmist” and the White House has pushed comments made by Fauci early in the pandemic in a bid to discredit him.
Fauci has typically brushed off Trump’s criticisms and has said he gets along with the President.
“Well, I mean people have their opinion about my reaction to things. I consider myself more a realist than an alarmist,” Fauci told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “The Lead” last week. “But, you know, people do have their opinions other than that. I’ve always thought of myself as a realist when it comes to this.”
CNN’s Gisela Crespo contributed to this report.