Dr. Scott Atlas, an adviser to former President Donald Trump’s White House Coronavirus Task Force, fired back at Dr. Deborah Birx in a statement Wednesday.
Birx, formerly the White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator under Trump, told a closed-door congressional hearing this month that hundreds of thousands of deaths from COVID-19 may have been prevented if Trump had been more focused on fighting the pandemic and less focused on campaigning. She also expressed concern that Atlas was unfit for his position as an advisor to the task force.
“I was constantly raising the alert in the doctors’ meetings of the depth of my concern about Dr. Atlas’ position, Dr. Atlas’ access, Dr. Atlas’ theories and hypothesis, and the depths and breadths of my concern,” Birx said. “I believe if we had fully implemented the mask mandates, the reduction in indoor dining, the getting friends and family to understand the risk of gathering in private homes, and we had increased testing, that we probably could have decreased fatalities into the 30% less to 40% less range.”
Atlas responded Wednesday, claiming that Birx wants to distract from the failure of her own policies: “It is not a surprise that Dr. Birx, as the official Task Force Coordinator of the White House Coronavirus Task Force from late February, 2020 through January 19, 2021, might want to blame others for the failure of her policies. As Task Force Coordinator, she held the authority over the official federal advice on medical policy.”
“It is an Orwellian attempt to rewrite history to blame those who criticized the lockdowns that were widely implemented for the failure of the lockdowns that were widely implemented. The policy recommendations of Dr. Birx as Coordinator of the White House Task Force were implemented by governors throughout nearly the entire nation during 2020,” Atlas continued. “Those policies failed to stop the dying, failed to stop the infection from spreading, and inflicted massive health damage and destruction, particularly on working class and lower-income families and on our children. History’s biggest failure of public health policy lies directly at the hands of those who recommended the lockdowns and those who implemented them, not on those who advised otherwise.”
Atlas denied advising Trump to “let the virus spread” and pointed to his writings and statements at the time where he advocated for social distancing, masking when not able to distance and heightened protection of individuals at high-risk. (RELATED: Fauci Under Fire For Gain-Of-Function Research, Testing On Dogs)
Atlas resigned from his position at the White House last November and now is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. Birx left her government position in January and now serves as the chief medical and scientific advisor for ActivePure Technologies.