Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government’s top infectious-disease expert and mouthpiece for the White House Coronavirus Task Force, told NBC’s “Today” show that he was asked to join the incoming Biden administration and leaped at the opportunity.
When President-Elect Joe Biden called him on Friday, his answer was “on the spot.”
Fauci will be Biden’s Chief Medical Adviser and is expected to serve a similar role in spearheading the new administration’s effort to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
Axios reports the decision follows months of Dr. Fauci and President Trump clashing over the coronavirus pandemic and how to navigate the growing number of cases and deaths.
Trump has repeatedly instilled hope and calm, often brushing the recommendations of scientists like Fauci. Conversely, Fauci would share a more alarming message and would share protective measures individuals could take to slow or stop the spread of the coronavirus such as wearing face masks, social distancing, remaining home, or closing their businesses.
“Biden’s decision to praise and hire Fauci not only continues the contrast he is trying to create with President Trump, who has talked about firing the doctor, but also shows the calibrated media exposure the president-elect and his team are using to control their message and instill public calm,” Axios reports.
According to the report, the announcement of Fauci’s new position can in tandem with Biden telling CNN’s Jake Tapper that he would ask all Americans to wear personal protective masks for the first 100 days of his administration.
The ask would be unofficial and is not expected to be a mandate or requirement.
Here’s more form Axios:
- Fauci said that he spoke to Biden about that suggestion and told him it was a good idea, but clarified that mask-wearing may still be needed after the 100 days.
- On the vaccine front, Fauci told NBC: “As we get into January and February and March, more and more people will be able to get vaccinated. So now is the time to hang in there and not give up.”