Fauci flip-flops, says he’s open to Wuhan lab leak theory after dismissing as ‘shiny object that will go away’

A flustered Dr. Anthony Fauci asserted that “we have an open mind” when it comes to the COVID Wuhan lab leak theory as he ponders retirement at the end of President Biden’s term.

Fauci, 81, left the door to the theory open just a crack while appearing on Fox News with host Bret Baier on Friday. The apparent backtrack appears to be an effort to cover his posterior in case it is proven that the virus originated at the Chinese lab rather than naturally, as he has previously asserted.

“We have an open mind but it looks very much like this was a natural occurrence, but you keep an open mind,” the epidemiologist condescendingly told Baier.

The Fox News host put Fauci on the spot over a claim he made in April 2020, after being emailed a link to a report by Baier himself, that dismissed the lab theory as “a shiny object that will go away.”

(Video Credit: Fox News)

“When you read the email from Kristian Andersen who says… ‘one has to look really closely to see some features (potentially) look engineered. And you say this is a shiny object and it will go away. It does not look like you’re open-minded to it,” Baier confrontationally commented.

Fauci tried to distract from the issue by mollifying Baier, “Bret, I know you’re a good person, I’ve known you a long time.”

“If you take a group of emails when people are considering and thinking out loud, and stop there, and don’t look at the weeks of consideration by the same people who wrote the same emails… in published peer review literature, they explain why they thought it was a natural occurrence.”

Even though Fauci claimed to have an open mind over the origins of the virus, he continued to reiterate that the virus had probably developed naturally in animal populations.

Then he laughably claimed that he has had an open mind on the issue since the beginning of the pandemic.

Republicans are vowing to investigate Fauci if they win both the House and the Senate in the midterm elections.

“They’re going to try and come after me, anyway. I mean, probably less so if I’m not in the job,” Fauci remarked. “I don’t make that a consideration in my career decision.”

“I don’t think they can say anything about the science,” Fauci said, taking a poke at Republicans who are threatening to investigate him. “If that’s what you want to investigate, be my guest. My telling somebody that it’s important to follow fundamental good public health practices … what are you going to investigate about that?”

The White House virus tsar is prepping to retire at the end of Biden’s presidency according to Politico. That move seems to be aimed at staving off an investigation by Republicans if possible.

“We’re in a pattern now. If somebody says, ‘You’ll leave when we don’t have COVID anymore,’ then I will be 105. I think we’re going to be living with this,” Biden’s chief medical adviser told Politico concerning COVID and his looming retirement.

When Fauci exits stage left, he will reportedly be paid a higher retirement pension than President Biden’s presidential salary.

His first-year pension will be $414,000, according to Open the Books. Biden makes $400,000 a year as president.

Fauci’s current federal salary is $480,654, but according to Open the Books, he will earn an estimated $530,000 per year. He was the highest-paid employee in the federal government in both 2020 and 2021.

“Dr. Fauci has been the highest-paid federal employee for years, and now we know that even in retirement his pay will be history-making,” OpenTheBooks.com Founder & CEO Adam Andrzejewski told Fox News Digital. “With the flexibility to spend his days as he wishes, Fauci will rake in more than the leader of the free world earns in a year. There’s seemingly no limit to the money taxpayers will have to spend on him in perpetuity.”

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