Trump may have an expert on disease in sight

Trump may have an expert on disease in sight

US President Donald Trump has retweeted a call to fire Dr. Anthony Fauci after the nation's top infectious disease specialist said life could have been saved if the country had shut down sooner during the novel coronavirus outbreak.

On Sunday Trump retweeted a message from a former Republican congressional candidate who quoted Fauci's comments during a Sunday television interview and tweeted "time to # FireFauci."

During the past, the Republican president has repeated critical tweets of officials or rivals, instead of making the critique itself. Trump, the retweet-fuelled speculation, had run out of patience with the famous scientist, and might probably fire him.

The White House did not answer an immediate request for comment as to whether Trump is unhappy with Fauci.

Fauci has taken on national prominence as a leader in fighting coronavirus. In the course of the crisis he questioned or criticized Trump on medical questions, including whether the anti-malaria medication hydroxychloroquine is effective against it.

On CNN's "State of the Union" Fauci was asked about a report from the New York Times documenting early alerts given to the White House about the novel coronavirus. The scientist admitted that shutting down the country earlier could have saved lives, but cautioned that there were a variety of factors involved.

"Obviously, it would have been nice if we had a better head start, but I don't think you could say that we are where we are right now because of one factor," Fauci said. "It's very complicated."

Fauci, who was already a far-right target for his Trump contradictions, attracted more reproach after the remarks.
Also on Sunday, Trump condemned the New York Times story in several tweets, calling it "A Fake."

Trump stepped in last week during the daily White House coronavirus briefing and blocked Fauci from answering a question about hydroxychloroquine.

Fauci, 79, has been chairing the federal infectious disease agency under Republican and Democratic presidents since 1984. In 2008 Republican George W. Bush awarded him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

During the public health crisis, some polls have shown that Americans trust him more than Trump.

Image: US President Donald Trump