“I would say what Dr. Fauci said yesterday was verifiably false,” alleged Paul during an appearance on “America’s Newsroom.”
Paul was referencing his most recent clash with Fauci at Tuesday’s Senate hearing in which the Kentucky senator alleged that a U.S. virologist had been working with the Chinese institute on such research and said it was funded by the NIH.
“Dr. Fauci, do you still support funding of the NIH funding of the lab in Wuhan?” he asked the NIH chief.
“Senator Paul, with all due respect, you are entirely, entirely, and completely incorrect,” a clearly irritated Fauci shot back. “The NIH has not ever and does not now fund gain of function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.”
While speaking to co-host Bill Hemmer, Paul elaborated on his allegation and claimed that Dr. Shi Zhengli, the Wuhan-based ‘bat woman’ virologist who researched coronavirus variants in animals, wrote a paper that MIT scientists surmised was referencing gain-of-function research (making pathogens deadlier or more easily transmissible).
Paul claims that the paper acknowledged that their funding came from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID), a subset of the NIH where Dr. Fauci is the director.
Paul added that he has looked at the grant application for the Wuhan lab research, which he says also references gain-of-function research, based on the analysis of a Rutgers cellular biologist.
When pressed by Hemmer on why Dr. Fauci would lie about the funding, Paul said that the NIAID director was afraid of “culpability,” since he allegedly sent the money to the same people who may have caused the outbreak.
While U.S. officials during the Trump administration believed the virus may have originated from the lab, some experts have doubted that explanation. But so far, investigations have been hampered by a secretive Chinese regime.
“So, Dr. Fauci came to Congress yesterday and lied. We can’t prove the virus came from the lab. I’m not saying it did. I’m saying there is very much suspicious evidence that it might have,” said Paul.
Fox News’ Adam Shaw contributed to this report.