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Fox News anchor Chris Wallace has joined the Beltway chorus throwing shade on Dr. Scott Atlas, who has been advising President Trump on the federal government’s pandemic response.
In an on-air discussion, colleague Sandra Smith teed it up by asking Wallace — who in the exchange described himself as a truth teller — for his opinion about the doctor’s optimism for the president’s possibly quick recovery from COVID.
Wallace is neither an expert on public health nor apparently debate moderation, the latter based his disastrous performance in emceeing the presidential debate on Tuesday night.
But lack of medical credentials isn’t stopping Wallace from dismissing Atlas’ claim that President Trump and wife Melania will make a rapid and complete recovery from COVID-19.
Trump advisor Dr. Scott Atlas says he expects first couple to make ‘complete, full and rapid recovery’ https://t.co/WUheu8DRAZ via @BIZPACReview
— Bo Snerdley (@BoSnerdley) October 2, 2020
“Well, I’m gonna say something — and folks, I’m just trying to give you the truth. Dr. Scott Atlas is not an epidemiologist, is not an infectious disease specialist. He has no training in this area at all. There are a number of top people on the president’s coronavirus task force who have had grave concerns about Scott Atlas and his scientific bona fides,” Wallace told Smith.
“I know I’m gonna get a lot of pushback on this. I very much hope what he says is true. One: He can’t know, because the president is just in the earliest stages of this, and two, I understand the desire of the White House and its political people to try to talk this down, and I’m not certainly trying to talk it up, and I pray the president is fine. But again follow the science. Listen to people like Anthony Fauci, people like Deborah Birx, who have been largely cut off. Listen to the independent people who do not have a political axe to grind, and I frankly don’t think Dr. Scott Atlas is one of those people.”
Atlas has sparked controversy by consistently challenging the conventional wisdom about stringent lockdowns and isolation that in and of themselves have posed serious consequences, economic and otherwise, for America.
In general, Atlas previously claimed that the one-size-fits-all public health approach never made sense because authorities were well aware of the primarily at-risk population, such as those with severe pre-existing conditions, and the elderly and infirm in nursing homes, rather than the public at large. Atlas has denied being a proponent of herd immunity.
Atlas, who received his M.D. degree from the University of Chicago, is a radiologist who formerly was the chief of neuroradiology at the Stanford University Medical Center, and is currently a senior fellow at Hoover Institution where he specializes in healthcare policy,
Although Wallace is a fan of Dr. Fauci, the longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has come under criticism from some quarters for inconsistent coronavirus recommendations that may or may not be motivated by politics or by other reasons.
Chris Wallace separately expressed relief the President Debate Commission ruled out the ceremonial handshake between the two candidates. “The debate commission had decided there would be no opening handshake, and thank God for that. They were about eight feet apart from each other at their podiums.” Wallace added that he himself was about eight feet away from both men and never got closer than that to Trump. Biden did approach Wallace at the end of the debate for a brief chat. Wallace noted that he plans to get tested.
Time will tell as to whether the POTUS and the FLOTUS will suffer severe or mild symptoms from the infection. In the meantime, Wallace’s prediction that he would get pushback on social media appears to be accurate. Here is just a sample:
Chris Wallace just attack Dr. Scott Atlas because he’s not an “epidemiologist like Fauci and Birx.”
Except Fauci and Birx aren’t epidemiologists either. 🤡
— WindTalker (@nmlinguaphile) October 2, 2020
Dr.Scott Atlas: I expect a full and rapid recovery for the President and First Lady.
Chris Wallace: Dr Atlas is no epidemiologist.
Dr Mark Siegel: Chris Wallace is no Epidemiologist either.
Good one Dr Siegel.
— Juanita Broaddrick (@atensnut) October 2, 2020
Scott Atlas is his policy guy, not his personal physician. Moreover, no MD or scientist has the expertise to manage a countrywide response to a pandemic. Chris Wallace never misses an opportunity to attempt to knife POTUS & his advisers. Real piece of work.https://t.co/eJairi93JI
— Jordan Schachtel (@JordanSchachtel) October 2, 2020
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