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Editor Daily Rundown: Rand Paul Flusters Fauci

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RAND FLUSTERS FAUCI… ‘You Do Not Know What You’re Talking About’: Rand Paul Clashes With Dr. Fauci In Tense Capitol Hill Hearing (VIDEO)

Paul went on to say that Fauci had previously denied that any NIH funding had gone toward gain-of-function research like that which was reportedly done at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV).

“Viruses that in nature only infect animals were manipulated in the Wuhan lab to gain the function of infecting humans. This research fits the definition of the research the NIH said was subject to the pause in 2014 to 2017, a pause in funding on gain of function. But the NIH failed to recognize this, defines it away, and it never came under any scrutiny,” Paul continued.

“Dr. Fauci, knowing it is a crime to lie to Congress, do you wish retract your statement?” he asked, arguing that NIH funding had, in fact, been used to support such research.

“Sen. Paul, I have never lied before the Congress and I do not retract that statement,” Fauci replied, saying that “qualified” people had determined it did not meet the definition of gain-of-function.

“You take an animal virus and you increase transmissibility to human, you’re saying that is not gain of function,” Paul protested.

“Sen. Paul, you do not know what you are taking about, quite frankly and I want to say that officially. You do not know what you are talking about,” Fauci said.

Paul pushed back again, arguing that it did meet the definition written by the NIH.

“It is not,” Fauci said.

“It is a dance, and you’re dancing around this because you’re trying to obscure responsibility for four million people dying around the world from a pandemic,” Paul replied.

He went on to quote Dr. Richard Ebright, a molecular biologist from Rutgers, who said, “The Wuhan lab used NIH funding to construct novel chimeric SARS-related coronaviruses able to infect human cells and laboratory animals.  …This is high-risk research that creates new potential pandemic pathogens (i.e., potential pandemic pathogens that exist only in a lab, not in nature). This research matches — indeed epitomizes — the definition of ‘gain of function research of concern’ for which federal funding was ‘paused’ in 2014-2017.”

“I totally resent the lie that you are now propagating, Senator,” Fauci shot back, arguing — as have a number of other experts — that it was impossible for the viruses in that lab to be manipulated into what was eventually named SARS-COV2. University of Iowa professor Dr. Stanley Perlman argued that the research in Wuhan did not represent “intentional gain of function.”

“They’re animal viruses that became more transmissible in humans and you funded it,” Paul said again as his time expired.

“And you are implying that what we did was responsible for the deaths of individual — I totally resent that,” Fauci said.

“It could have been,” Paul continued.

“If anybody’s lying here, Senator, it is you,” Fauci shot back.

 

WAPO’S JOSH ROGIN: Hey guys, @RandPaul was right and Fauci was wrong. The NIH was funding gain of function research in Wuhan but NIH pretended it didn’t meet their “gain of function” definition to avoid their own oversight mechanism. SorryNotSorry if that doesn’t fit your favorite narrative.

 

DR. RICHARD EBRIGHT, RUTGERS UNIVERSITYFauci brazenly lied the last time he confronted Paul. And Fauci brazenly lied again today.

 

EARLIER… FACTCHECK.ORG…

Richard Ebright, a professor of chemistry and chemical biology at Rutgers University and a critic of gain-of-function research, told the Washington Post that the EcoHealth/Wuhan lab research “was — unequivocally — gain-of-function research.” He said it “met the definition for gain-of-function research of concern under the 2014 Pause.” That definition, as we said, pertained to “projects that may be reasonably anticipated to confer attributes to influenza, MERS, or SARS viruses such that the virus would have enhanced pathogenicity and/or transmissibility in mammals via the respiratory route.”

 

MORE… MAY 25… EBRIGHT: It is a matter of record that the Wuhan lab used NIH funding to construct novel chimeric SARS-related coronaviruses able to infect human cells and laboratory animals. The research was–unequivocally–gain of function research.

 

EMILY KOPP: The end of Rand Paul’s exchange with Fauci on gain of function research and the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Fauci says research was reviewed “qualified virologists and evolutionary biologists.” But that’s in a secret NIH review process (P3CO). I’ve never seen Fauci this upset. (VIDEO)

 

DR. RICHARD EBRIGHT: A secret ***pre-P3CO*** NIH process. (The proposal never underwent P3CO review because NIAID-OD and NIH-OD, through negligence or misfeasance, failed to forward the proposal for P3CO review.)

 

FOX: Rand Paul: Fauci intimidates scientists from contradicting him because ‘he controls all the funding’ (VIDEO)

“He has been [at NIH] for 40 years; probably 39 years too long. But he controls all the funding,” Paul warned.

“So, people are deathly afraid of him. Researchers will not speak out. Why have there not been other scientists?”

Paul said that he receives letters from scientists that routinely contradict Fauci’s prescriptions and public statements, but that they all offer the same regret: that they are afraid to speak out against what the health care bureaucrat says.

“They are very distrustful of what he is saying. They don’t think he is making sense and reading the science accurately,” said Paul.

“They’re afraid to speak out because many of them are university scientists and they depend on NIH funds: To cross him means it’s the last money you will ever get.”

Paul said Fauci has a “significant conflict of interest” in the Wuhan matter because he was “at the top of the food chain” of funding distribution and now claims none of it went to the dangerous gain-of-function research.

“All he is saying is oh, well, the research now doesn’t meet our definition,” he said. “He is dancing around the truth. Why? Because if this disease came from the lab and they were funding gain of function, guess what? There is at the very least moral culpability he has for the beginning of the pandemic.”

 

Rand Paul To Send Letter To DOJ Asking For Criminal Referral Into Dr. Fauci (VIDEO)

Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul said Tuesday he would send a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) requesting a criminal referral of White House chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci.

“You kicked off your questioning of Dr. Fauci emphasizing federal law makes lying to Congress, a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. Is it your belief based on the evidence, senator, that he lied before Congress and broke the law?,” Fox News host Sean Hannity, on whose show Paul appeared Tuesday, asked.

“Yes, and I will be sending a letter to the Department of Justice asking for a criminal referral because he has lied to Congress,” Paul replied.

 

PROGRAMMING NOTE… SEN. RAND PAUL WILL APPEAR ON WMAL’s ‘THE VINCE COGLIANESE SHOW’ AT 5:30 PM EST WEDNESDAY… LISTEN LIVE: WMAL.com

 

COULD WE SOON GET A REAL CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATION INTO COVID’S ORIGINS? JOSH ROGIN: National security Democrats call for 9/11-style commission on covid-19

When the Biden administration finishes its 90-day intelligence review about the origins of covid-19 next month, Congress’s efforts to investigate the issue will be just beginning. Now, a group of national security-focused, centrist Democrats is calling for a 9/11-style bipartisan commission to publicly investigate both the source of the outbreak and our country’s response.

The Blue Dog Coalition, a group of foreign-policy-minded moderate Democratic lawmakers, sent a letter last week to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), as well as their Republican counterparts, requesting they establish the commission. They want it to follow the structure described in a bill introduced by Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-Fla.), a co-chair for the Blue Dogs, and John Katko (R-N.Y.), that would include five members appointed by each side. The body would expand the scope of the Biden administration’s ongoing investigation, covering all aspects of the pandemic, and produce a report that would have bipartisan credibility.

 

DR. RICHARD EBRIGHT SAYS WE HAVE PLENTY OF PLACES TO START… WITHOUT CHINA’S HELP… EBRIGHT: Many threads of investigation are available in the US and would be accessible to a Congressional inquiry with subpoena power. At EcoHealth. At funding agencies (USAID, DTRA, DARPA, DHS, and NIH). At publishers (Springer-Nature and Lancet). No cooperation from China needed.

 

FBI Allegedly Played ‘Larger Role’ In Whitmer Kidnapping Plot Than Previously Known, According To Report

The FBI allegedly played a much “larger role” in the plot to kidnap Democratic Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, according to a BuzzFeed News report. The defense had originally planned to argue that the alleged plotters were “induced or persuaded” by the FBI.

At least 12 FBI informants and undercover FBI agents were involved with gathering information against the anti-government militia members who allegedly planned to kidnap Whitmer. BuzzFeed claimed that the FBI played a greater role than was previously known. The months-long investigation eventually led to the arrest of 14 individuals in connection to the plot to kidnap Whitmer, and 13 of them have pleaded not guilty, according to BuzzFeed.

The defendants claimed that the FBI-connected individuals often encouraged militia members to engage in the planning process and other criminal activities, and facilitated some of these interactions, according to Buzzfeed. From the defendants’ perspective, the informants and undercover agents were crucial pieces to the alleged plot. The defense further argued that without the FBI’s influence, there may have never been a conspiracy to allegedly kidnap the governor, according to BuzzFeed.

One of these informants, a man from Wisconsin, reportedly planned meet-ups for the anti-government militia members, even paying for hotel rooms and food to incentivize some of these militia members. The earliest versions of the plan to take Whitmer hostage began at those meetings, BuzzFeed reported.

Another informant, a veteran of the Iraq War named “Dan,” infiltrated a militia group based out of Michigan so successfully that he became second-in-command. […]

For six months, Dan wore a wire and gathered hundreds of hours of recordings for the FBI, according to BuzzFeed.

“Everybody down with what’s going on?” Dan said as a group of the militia members took part in a recon mission around Birch Lake near Whitmers’ vacation cottage, according to court documents.

As one of the militia’s leaders, Dan was reportedly able to bring in another Wolverine Watchmen member, an undercover FBI Agent by the name “Red,” court documents claimed. Red was a supposed explosives expert that could help the group get the explosives they needed to blow up a bridge near Birch Lake that would inhibit law enforcement’s ability to respond to the kidnapping, and give them enough time to escape with the governor, court documents showed. Red claimed that $4,000 worth of C-4 would be enough to destroy the Elk River bridge. The men agreed to raise enough funds to purchase the explosives.

 

Federal Bureau Of Incompetence: An Analysis Of The FBI’s Most Embarrassing Failures

America’s finest at the FBI last week added yet another screw up to what appears to be a growing laundry list of humiliating failures.

Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General (IG) Michael Horowitz released a reportWednesday in which he accused the bureau of failing to adequately respond to sexual abuse allegations against disgraced U.S. gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar.

“Failures by Indianapolis [FBI] officials contributed to a delay [in investigating Nassar] of over a year,” the report said, adding that FBI officials failed to respond to the “Nassar allegations with the utmost seriousness and urgency that the allegations deserved and required, made numerous and fundamental errors when they did respond to them, and failed to notify state or local authorities of the allegations or take other steps to mitigate the ongoing threat.”

The report also alleged that after receiving the first complaint against Nassar in 2015, the bureau neither notified state, nor local authorities that he was under investigation, nor did they notify agents in Lansing, Michigan, where Nassar was employed at the time by Michigan State University. […]

Nassar would end up being accused of sexually assaulting at least 265 women, some of whom were famous U.S. gymnasts like Aly Raisman and Simone Biles, under the guise of medical treatment. He was sentenced in 2018 to 40-175 years in prison.

The sharp rebuke from the IG is another black eye for the bureau, the public missteps of which over the last few decades have come under increased bipartisan criticism.

Politically-motivated spying campaigns, being warned about earth-shattering tragedies before they occur, and refusing to bring actual criminals to justice are just some of the embarrassing failures the FBI has increasingly added to its record.

 

THE BIDEN CENSORSHIP INITIATIVE CONTINUES… WHITE HOUSE SETS SIGHTS ON ‘CONSERVATIVE MEDIA’… White House comms director Kate Bedingfield says social media companies “should be held accountable” for misinformation on their platforms: “There are conservative news outlets who are creating irresponsible content.” (VIDEO)

 

WHITE HOUSE FLOATS SECTION 230 CHANGES TO CENSOR SOCIAL MEDIA… CNN: White House reviewing Section 230 amid efforts to push social media giants to crack down on misinformation

The White House is reviewing whether social media platforms should be held legally accountable for publishing misinformation via Section 230, a law that protects companies’ ability to moderate content, White House communications director Kate Bedingfield said Tuesday.

The Section 230 debate is taking on new urgency in recent days as the administration has called on social media platforms to take a more aggressive stance on combating misinformation. The federal law, which is part of the Communications Decency Act, provides legal immunity to websites that moderate user-generated content.

“We’re reviewing that, and certainly they should be held accountable,” Bedingfield told MSNBC when asked about Section 230 and whether social media companies like Facebook should be liable and open to lawsuits for publishing false information that causes Americans harm.

President Joe Biden, Bedingfield said, also believes it is “the responsibility of the people creating the content.”

“It is a big and complicated ecosystem, and everybody bears responsibility to ensure that we are not providing people with bad information about a vaccine that will save their lives,” she said.

 

ACLU FINALLY SAYS SOMETHING… ACLU: No matter which party is in power, the government cannot be trusted to label ‘truth’ or ‘fiction’ any more than Facebook or Twitter can. Remember when then-President Trump claimed COVID would just ‘go away’ without a vaccine? (THREAD)

 

GLENN GREENWALD: Good to see the @ACLU taking this stand against the Biden White House’s attempt to define what is “true” and “false” to censor the internet. The thread reviews all the lies governments have told, under both parties, making it irrational to trust the government to do this

 

ICYMI… HERE’S A DEEPLY IMPORTANT TECH STORY… JULY 16… NY POST: Wikipedia co-founder says site is now ‘propaganda’ for left-leaning ‘establishment’

Wikipedia co-founder Larry Sanger has warned that the website can no longer be trusted — insisting it is now just “propaganda” for the left-leaning “establishment.” […]

“You can’t cite Fox News on socio-political issues. It’s just banned now,” he insisted of the apparent clampdown on respected conservative voices.

“It means that if a controversy does not appear in the mainstream centre-left media, then it’s not going to appear on Wikipedia,” he said.

Now you can only rely on the site to “to give an establishment point of view,” rather than the diverse range of opinions it was set up to give, he insisted.

“If only one version of the facts is allowed then that gives a huge incentive to wealthy and powerful people to seize control of things like Wikipedia in order to shore up their power,” he said.

 

AMERICANS HATE LOCKDOWNS… ARE OUR LEADERS LISTENING? WSJ: Local Health Authorities Seek to Curb Delta Variant Without New Rules

Local health authorities in hot spots around the U.S. are seeking to blunt the highly contagious Delta variant of Covid-19 by trying to boost stagnating vaccination rates while largely stopping short of reinstituting rules and restrictions.

During previous surges, state and local leaders attempted a variety of approaches to slow infections. They instituted mask mandates, shut down public spaces and ordered businesses to close or run at limited capacity, in efforts to buy time until vaccines arrived.

Now, many leaders are focused on campaigns of persuasion and education. In some places, frustration is mounting at the slow pace of vaccinations, while infections are accelerating.

 

BUT PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICIALS ARE LAYING THE GROUNDWORK FOR VACCINE MANDATES & PASSPORTS… VERY SOON… NBC: Vaccine mandates more likely once FDA grants full approvals, health experts say

WASHINGTON — The United States could see a wave of Covid-19 vaccine mandates as soon as the Food and Drug Administration grants full approval to one or more of the shots, public health experts predicted.

The three vaccines authorized by the FDA for emergency use against the coronavirus have proven safe and effective under that expedited review process and in the real world, and doctors and the nation’s top public health officials have said there’s no need for anyone to wait to get inoculated.

But as the pace of vaccinations lags and concerns about the highly-contagious delta variant grow, the official regulatory signoff would remove a significant legal and public relations barrier for businesses and government agencies that want to require vaccinations for their employees and customers, former health officials from the Biden and the Obama administrations said.

“I think once the vaccines go through full FDA approval, everything should be on the table, and I think that everything will be on the table at the level of municipalities, states, employers, venues, government agencies,” said Andy Slavitt, who stepped down as President Joe Biden’s Covid response coordinator last month and remains in close contact with administration officials.

 

BIDEN MAY BEGIN TO PUSH THE LIMITS ON VACCINE MANDATES… JAZZ SHAW…

If Slavitt is correct, Joe Biden may not stick with his current rejection of federal vaccination mandates. He predicts that once full approval is given, the White House may try an incremental approach. The first step would likely be a requirement for the military, health care workers at VA hospitals, and workers who have to deal with the public regularly, such as TSA screeners. What’s unclear is whether the federal government would dare to try to make the vaccine mandatory for civilians who don’t work for the government. As NBC News points out, that has never been tested in court because it’s never been attempted. The subsequent lawsuits should truly be something to behold if they try it, however.

 

WHITE HOUSE REVEALS THERE HAVE BEEN MORE IN-HOUSE COVID INFECTIONS THAT THEY DIDN’T PREVIOUSLY DISCLOSE… KATIE WATSON: Psaki clarifies to @edokeefe there have been other breakthrough COVID-19 cases in the White House that have not been publicly disclosed.(THREAD)

O’Keefe: “You confirmed today there’s been a breakthrough case.” Psaki: “Yep.” O’Keefe: “But you’re also confirming there have been other breakthrough cases?” Psaki: “Yep.” O’Keefe: “But you had not previously disclosed that there had been?” Psaki: “And — that’s correct.”

 

BIDEN’S MOUTH IS CAUSING HEADACHES FOR THE ADMINISTRATION… HILL: Unscripted remarks start to haunt President Biden

President Biden has been more freewheeling with his remarks in the last few weeks, leading to slip-ups the White House has had to clean up.

The most recent example came Friday, when Biden accused Facebook of “killing people” because of the misinformation spread on the social media network about coronavirus vaccines.

It was a striking statement that triggered a furious response from Facebook. And on Monday, it became clear Biden had gone further and been more biting than he intended.

Less than three days after his initial remarks, the president reversed course, saying Facebook “isn’t killing people.” […]

Biden’s walk-back of his original comments was the second time in recent weeks he’s been forced to backtrack from public comments that have caused a stir.

It’s caused some consternation among people close to the White House and raised memories of past Biden gaffes.

“A little bit cringeworthy, not going to lie,” said one major Democratic donor, who referenced former President Trump to underline the discomfort. “I think these sorts of things can be said more artfully and less Trumpy.”

 

BIDENWORLD IS MAKING BANK… WSJ: Lobbyist Jeff Ricchetti, Brother of Senior Biden Aide, Sees Bump in Fees, Clients

WASHINGTON—Jeff Ricchetti’s lobbying firm has flourished in the months since his brother Steve Ricchetti was named a senior counselor to President Biden, according to reports released Tuesday.

His firm, Ricchetti Inc., collected $1.67 million in lobbying fees in the first half of the year, new lobbying records show—more than quadruple the $370,000 it reported in the same period of last year. Jeff Ricchetti is the only registered lobbyist at his firm.

After years of stagnation, Mr. Ricchetti’s client list began to grow rapidly as Mr. Biden won the Democratic nomination and defeated former President Donald Trump in the Nov. 3 election, records show. Mr. Ricchetti has since picked up high-profile clients such asAmazon.com Inc., General Motors Co. and TC Energy Corp. , the company behind the Keystone Pipeline.

Lobbying disclosure records from the first three months of the year showed that in addition to contacting Congress, Jeff Ricchetti also was in touch with the Executive Office of the President, which includes West Wing staff, on behalf of several of his clients.

Records show Jeff Ricchetti had not lobbied the EOP during the Trump administration or most of the Obama administration.

 

Rep. Swalwell Spent Thousands Of Campaign Dollars On Alcohol, Limos, Fancy Restaurants And Luxury Hotels

Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell of California reportedly spent thousands of campaign dollars on booze, fancy restaurants, limo services and the luxury hotel where his wife once worked.

The Swalwell For Congress campaign committee spent over $500,000 in the second quarter of 2021 despite the fact that it’s a non-election year, FEC reports, which were first flagged by Fox NewsTuesday, show.

The report shows that the campaign spent $21,200.75 in six separate transactions last April at the Ritz-Carlton in Half Moon Bay, California. Swalwell’s wife Brittney Swalwell was the director of sales of the hotel for four years according to her LinkedIn profile.

Nearly $11,000 was spent last quarter by the Swalwell campaign on luxury vehicle services, including more than $6,000 in 21 transactions with NYC-based Sunny’s Executive Sedan in the months of May and June. Just over $4,000 was spent in five transactions on California-based AA Limo Service LLC.

 

LEBRON ATTACKS OLYMPIC RULE BANNING ANTHEM PROTESTS… FOX: LeBron James company takes aim at Olympics protest rule: ‘We see this as a way of silencing voices’

LeBron James’ effect at the Tokyo Olympics will still be felt even if the Los Angeles Lakers superstar is no longer playing basketball for Team USA.

The Uninterrupted, a media company founded by the four-time NBA champion and his business partner Maverick Carter, took aim Tuesday at the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s rule barring athletes from political protests on the medal stand and during competition. […]

“Rule 50 is a rule in the Olympic Charter that bans any kind of demonstration and prohibits any opinionated political, religious or racial propaganda at the Olympic site in 2021,” the Uninterrupted’s message read.

“The only time an athlete is able to speak freely is at press conferences and to the media, but not on the Olympic podium when the world is watching.

“Simply put, we see this as a way of silencing voices, and as advocates for Athlete empowerment, we take a stand against it.

“Sport is not neutral. When athletes speak up – whether from a stadium, gymnasium, or track – they start conversations and things change.

“Give athletes the chance to show up fully and to make change.”

 

NBC: Norwegian women’s beach handball team fined for not playing in bikinis

The Norwegian women’s beach handball team has been fined for refusing to play in bikini bottoms during a game in the sport’s Euro 2021 tournament.

The team wore thigh-length elastic shorts during their bronze medal match against Spain in Bulgaria on Sunday to protest against the regulation bikini-bottom design that the sport’s Norwegian federation president called “embarrassing.”

The team was fined 1,500 euros total ($1,700) for “improper clothing,” according to a statement from the European Handball Association’s Disciplinary Commission.

While male players are allowed to play in tank tops and shorts no longer than 4 inches above the knee, women are required to wear midriff-baring tops and bikini bottoms “with a close fit and cut on an upward angle toward the top of the leg” and a maximum side width of 4 inches, according to International Handball Federation regulations.

 

Deion Sanders Has Pathetic Reaction To Being Addressed By His First Name (VIDEO)

Deion Sanders had a pathetic reaction during SWAC Media Days after being addressed by his first name.

The Clarion Ledger reported that Sanders cut short his time at media day for the conference after he was addressed by his first name by reporter Nick Suss.

“You don’t call Nick Saban, ‘Nick.’ Don’t call me Deion. If you call Nick (Saban), Nick, you’ll get cussed out on the spot, so don’t do that to me…Treat me like Nick,” Sanders explained to the outlet.