In an interview with Fox News host John Roberts on Wednesday, White House coronavirus task force member Dr. Anthony Fauci said that he “didn’t get any sense” that President Trump was distorting facts about the coronavirus pandemic.
Roberts referenced an audio clip from March that was recently published by The Washington Post in which the president said “I wanted to always play [the pandemic] down. I still like playing it down, because I don’t want to create a panic.”
Roberts asked Fauci, “You were there through that whole thing. Was that the playbook or was that the president just going his own direction?”
“I don’t think so, John,” Fauci responded. “I don’t recall anything different than in our discussions that we had with the president that he said things quite similar publicly.”
Roberts asked Fauci if he believed that President Trump had downplayed the threat of the virus, and Fauci responded, “No, I didn’t. I didn’t get any sense that he was distorting anything. I mean in my discussions with him, they were always straightforward about the concerns that we had. We related that to him. And when he would go out, I’d hear him discussing the same sort of things. He would often say, ‘We just got through with a briefing with the group from the task force,’ and would talk about it. So it may have happened, but I have not seen that kind of distortion.”