Crowd chants ‘Fire Fauci’, Trump says ‘I appreciate it’

President Donald Trump gives his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress, Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019 at the Capitol in Washington, as Vice President Mike Pence, left, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi look on. (Doug Mills/The New York Times via AP, Pool)
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By Nikhila Natarajan

New York– The slow explosion of the Donald Trump-Anthony Fauci bombshell is heading into all too familiar territory.

“Fire Fauci”, a Florida crowd chanted, well past midnight with 24 hours to go before US election day. Trump’s response: “Don’t tell anybody, but let me wait until a little bit after the election.”

Trump liked the advice. “I appreciate it,” he told his supporters in must-win Florida, which delivers 29 electoral votes to the winner.

The chanting began after Trump repeated a familiar trope: That the virus would get less news coverage after Election Day.

In the process, Trump set in motion a classic shoot-the-messenger tactic and found a crowdsourced post-election target: America’s top infectious diseases specialist Anthony Fauci.

Fauci has become increasingly vocal about Trump’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic, revealing that he and the president have not spoken for months and raised the alarm that the “stars” are aligned all wrong going into the winter of 2020.

In recent days, Trump has called Fauci and his ilk “idiots” and claimed that Americans are tired of “Covid, Covid, Covid” all the time.

Fauci has pinned America’s failure to contain the virus on the lack of a uniform guidance from the top, saying: “I’ve always felt that uniformity of response and consistency of response is always a good thing. People know where they stand, know what they need to do and it was certain fundamental things that have not been adhered to consistently.”

Trump’s comments in Florida came at a time when the US has hit another grim world record – it crossed 100,000 daily cases. America leads the world in Covid-19 caseload and deaths. More than 230,000 Americans have perished since the virus entered the homeland early this year. (IANS)


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