‘Tony’s Pitching Arm Is Far More Accurate’: Trump Hits Fauci Over Prognostications

President Donald Trump continued to hammer Dr. Anthony Fauci on Tuesday, saying his “pitching arm is far more accurate than his prognostications.”

For background, Fauci, an immunologist and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases who served on the White House Coronavirus Task Force, threw out an errant first pitch at a Washington Nationals game this summer.

“Actually, Tony’s pitching arm is far more accurate than his prognostications. ‘No problem, no masks.’ WHO no longer likes Lockdowns – just came out against. Trump was right. We saved 2,000,000 USA lives!!!” Trump wrote on Twitter.

Trump was hitting Fauci for his past comments on masks. In early March,  Fauci told “60 Minutes” that face masks were not necessary for the general population amid the COVID-19 outbreak, noting that while masks might make people “feel a little bit better,” they don’t provide the protection folks believe they do and might create “unintended consequences.”

“There’s no reason to be walking around with a mask,” the infectious disease expert said then. “Wearing a mask might make people feel a little bit better and it might even block a droplet, but it’s not providing the perfect protection that people think that it is. And often, there are unintended consequences; people keep fiddling with the mask and they keep touching their face.”

In April, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued guidance advising face masks for the general population.

“CDC continues to study the spread and effects of the novel coronavirus across the United States,” the guidance said. “We now know from recent studies that a significant portion of individuals with coronavirus lack symptoms (‘asymptomatic’) and that even those who eventually develop symptoms (‘pre-symptomatic’) can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms. This means that the virus can spread between people interacting in close proximity—for example, speaking, coughing, or sneezing—even if those people are not exhibiting symptoms.”

Trump was also criticizing Fauci for lockdowns, which the doctor advocated in the early days of the pandemic. But this week, World Health Organization (WHO) envoy Dr. David Nabarro said restrictive shutdown measures should only be used as a last resort.

“We in the World Health Organization do not advocate lockdowns as the primary means of control of this virus,” Nabarro said in a video interview with the Spectator magazine.

“The only time we believe a lockdown is justified is to buy you time to reorganize, regroup, rebalance your resources, protect your health workers who are exhausted, but by and large, we’d rather not do it,” Nabarro said. “Lockdowns just have one consequence that you must never, ever belittle, and that is making poor people an awful lot poorer.”

Trump on Monday said he was right. “The World Health Organization, did you see what happened? They came out a little while ago and they admitted that Donald Trump was right,” Trump said during a campaign rally in Sanford, Florida.

“The lockdowns are doing tremendous damage to these Democrat-run states where they are locked down, sealed up. Suicide rates, drug rates, alcoholism, death by so many different forms. You can’t do that,” the president said.

Related: Fauci, Trump Get Into War Of Words Over Doctor’s Praise On COVID-19 Response

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