Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) didn’t hold off during a fiery exchange with Dr. Anthony Fauci about the need to continue wearing a face mask after having been vaccinated or immune during a Senate hearing, getting under the nation’s top infectious doctor skin by saying his double mask-wearing show is “just theater.”
Paul asked Fauci to explain why Americans who had already contracted the COVID virus and recovered, or recently received the COVID vaccine should still be “wearing masks well into 2022” during a Senate Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee hearing Thursday. The Kentucky Senator cited numerous medical studies before saying that there “no scientific studies arguing or proving that infection with COVID does not create immunity,” before asking the top infectious doctor to cite “specific studies” to prove his non-factual claim that “everyone” should continue to wear a mask.
“You want people to wear masks for another couple of years. You’ve been vaccinated and you parade around in two masks for show. You can’t get it again. There is virtually a zero percent chance that you’re going to get it and yet you’re telling people who have had the vaccine, who have immunity — you’re defying everything that we know about immunity by telling people to wear masks who have been vaccinated. Instead, you should be saying that there is no science saying we are going to have a problem for the large number of people who have been vaccinated,” Paul asked Fauci, citing an article that as of last fall only five of the 38 million confirmed cases of the virus were believed to be reinfections.
“Here we go again with the theater,” Fauci responded, giving a hand brush-off gesture at the same time. “Let me just state for the record that masks are not theater.”
Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases testified before the committee about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. He argued with Paul, saying the need for wearing masks is to prevent the spread of virus variants.
“Can I just state for the record that masks are not theater. I totally disagree with you,” Fauci said.
“You’re making policy based on conjecture!” Paul said, talking over Fauci as the infectious doctor discussed “variants” to claim it is a “good reason for a mask.”
“What studies show significant reinfection, hospitalization, and death after either natural infection or the vaccine? It doesn’t exist. There is no evidence that there is significant reinfections after the vaccine. In fact, I don’t think we have a hospitalization in the United States after the two-week period after the second vaccination,” Paul added.
Rand, an ophthalmologist went on and schooled Fauci on the reason why there are many skeptics to not getting the COVID vaccine due to the infectious doctor repeatedly telling them that despite getting inoculated that one needs to continue wearing a face mask.
“You want to get rid of vaccine hesitancy? Tell them you can quit wearing your mask after they get the vaccine,” Paul said. “You want people to get the vaccine, give them a reward instead of telling them that the nanny states going to be there for three more years and you got to wear a mask forever. People don’t want to hear it.”
“If you already have immunity, you’re wearing a mask to give comfort to others. You’re not wearing a mask because of any science,” the senator concluded. “People don’t want to hear it and there is no science behind it.”
Fauci icily reiterated that he “totally disagreed” with Paul’s statement, but never provided any evidence to prove that the Kentucky Senator was wrong.
There has been a long-running conflict between Fauci and the Kentucky senator. Last September, Fauci accused Paul of misconstruing his remarks during another Senate hearing.
Paul is not the only senator to spar with the infectious doctor. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) slammed Fauci late last year for manipulating public perception surrounding COVID, calling out the infectious doctor for repeatedly lying to Americans in particular about the effectiveness of wearing a face mask and “distorting” the estimated level of vaccinated American population needed to reach herd immunity.
“Dr. Fauci lied about masks in March. Dr. Fauci has been distorting the level of vaccination needed for herd immunity,” Rubio tweeted on December 27. “It isn’t just him. Many in elite bubbles believe the American public doesn’t know ‘what’s good for them so they need to be tricked into doing the right thing.'”
If Fauci is really concerned about new COVID variants, why isn’t he recommending the need to control the southern border amid the surge of illegal migrants entering the country without being tested or contained for COVID on national tv?