President Trump on Saturday bashed Anthony Fauci, saying that he has “never been more wrong” than denying COVID-19 started in a Wuhan lab, adding that China “must pay” for the outbreak.
President Trump made the comments while speaking at the North Carolina GOP’s convention, where he declared that the evidence, even 13 months ago, demonstrates that the COVID-19 outbreak started in a lab in the Wuhan Institute for Virology. The “lab leak” theory was repeatedly dismissed by NIAID head Anthony Fauci, who Trump worked with during his time in the White House on the federal government’s response to the pandemic.
Trump joked that Fauci, who he said he got along with was “not a great doctor,” but is a “hell of a promoter… he likes television more than any politician in this room!” He said that Fauci was in fact “wrong on every issue, and he’s wrong on Wuhan and the lab.” Trump noted that his administration ended the payments to the Wuhan lab, which were started in 2014 under the Obama administration, but as National File reported, the funding for Peter Daszak’s EcoHealth Alliance, who sponsored experiments on coronavirus in Wuhan, were restored only months later by Fauci and the NIH.
BREAKING: Trump says Fauci was never more wrong than when he denied that COVID-19 came from the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and declares that China must pay reparations for the leak. pic.twitter.com/HS7mZWbFF3
— National File (@NationalFile) June 6, 2021
President Trump further noted that he actually often went directly against Fauci’s recommendations, including shutting the borders to China and Europe, which Fauci even had to admit later was the right decision, “and saved thousands and thousands of lives.” He slammed Fauci for also flip-flopping on masks, as he at the start in newly released emails told people that masks did not work, but is now “a radical masker… if you have three, if you have four, get a pair of goggles also, ideal, and let’s wear them for another five or six years!”
Although Fauci was wrong on many things, he was never “more wrong than when he denied the virus and where it came from,” Trump continued. Given that COVID-19 likely did come from a Chinese lab leak, Trump suggested that the time has now “come for America and the world to demand reparations and accountability from the Communist Party of China. We should also declare within one unified voice that China must pay. They must pay!”
In terms of how America and the rest of the world would collect those reparations, Trump argued that the United States “should immediately take steps to phase in a firm 100% tariff on all goods made in China.” Such an action would cause “a lot of things” to happen to China, including preventing further military build up. This tariff would not just apply to goods that came directly from China, but all goods made over there, as Trump pointed out that China often sells their goods through other countries – such goods would also be affected by this hypothetical tariff.