MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) defended Dr. Anthony Fauci after President Donald Trump reportedly lashed out at the nation’s top infectious disease expert Monday.
“Dr. Fauci is one of our country’s most distinguished public servants,” said Alexander, chairman the U.S. Senate health committee. “He has served six presidents, starting with Ronald Reagan. If more Americans paid attention to his advice, we’d have fewer cases of COVID-19, and it would be safer to go back to school and back to work and out to eat.”
Alexander’s statement came hours after Trump blasted Fauci as a “disaster” in a campaign team call, according to reporters who were invited to listen in on the call.
“People are tired of COVID. People are tired of hearing Fauci and all these idiots… Fauci’s a nice guy, he’s been here for 500 years.” the president said, according to tweets from Maggie Haberman of the New York Times.
Trump went on to say he’d get negative press in the event he fired Fauci.
“Fauci, if you listened to him, we’d have 700,00, 800,000 deaths,” Trump added, according to Politico.
The current U.S. death toll is approaching 220,000.