Dr. Anthony Fauci is ripped into President Donald Trump’s campaign after they used his face and words in a new campaign ad without his consent, reports CNN.
“In my nearly five decades of public service, I have never publicly endorsed any political candidate,” Dr. Fauci told CNN in a statement.
“The comments attributed to me without my permission in the GOP campaign ad were taken out of context from a broad statement I made months ago about the efforts of federal public health officials,” he added.
The Trump campaign released the new ad last week after Trump was discharged from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center following treatment for Covid-19.
The 30-second ad touts Trump’s personal experience with the virus and uses a quote from Fauci in an attempt to make it appear as if he is praising Trump’s response.
“President Trump is recovering from the coronavirus, and so is America,” the ad’s narrator says. “Together we rose to meet the challenge, protecting our seniors, getting them life-saving drugs in record time, sparing no expense.”
The ad then flashes to an interview with Fauci in which he says, “I can’t imagine that anybody could be doing more.”
Though no date is provided in the ad, Fauci’s quote is from an interview with Fox News in March.
“We’ve never had a threat like this. The coordinated response has been…There are a number of adjectives to describe it — impressive, I think is one of them. We’re talking about all hands on deck. I, as one of many people on a team, I’m not the only person,” Fauci said then. “Since the beginning, that we even recognized what this was, I have been devoting almost full time on this. I’m down at the White House virtually every day with the task force. It’s every single day. So, I can’t imagine that under any circumstances that anybody could be doing more.”
In response to Fauci saying the ad took his words out of context, Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh said, “These are Dr. Fauci’s own words. The video is from a nationally broadcast television interview in which Dr. Fauci was praising the work of the Trump Administration. The words spoken are accurate, and directly from Dr. Fauci’s mouth.”
On ABC News Sunday’s “This Week,” host Jon Karl said he requested Fauci for an interview, and although he was willing to come on, the White House blocked the appearance. Karl said other medical experts on the task force were also requested, but the White House did not offer anyone.