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While Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) seems to love the limelight, that love of attention doesn’t mean he’s willing to face opposition views on Fox, it turns out.
According to Politico, Fox News has repeatedly tried to invite Fauci onto the network for interviews and questions, yet Fauci has rejected them all. The last time Fauci was on Fox was with on October 17th, with Fox News Sunday’s Chris Wallace, although for some reason Politico claims the last time Fauci was on the network was back in July.
The segment on Politico, “West Wing Playbook,” written by Alex Thompson, Sarah Owermohle, and Tina Sfondeles, asserts that the lack of appearances hasn’t been due to a lack of effort on Fox’s part, according to an anonymous source they cited as being “an official familiar with bookings at Fox News.” Politico noted the obvious, pointing out that Fox News is arguably the biggest critic of Fauci and the administration of President Joe Biden that he serves, which probably has something to do with the lack of appearances.
However, as Politico also noted, that fear of dealing with opposition means that there is no visible face of the Biden administration on the nation’s most-watched cable news network. The lack of someone as visible and famous as Fauci on Fox means that there is effectively no real effort to speak to the demographic most likely to be skeptical of the Covid-19 vaccines, and therefore the group that the Biden administration ostensibly would want to reach the most. There is, however, reason to wonder if Fauci appearing on Fox more often might not have the opposite effect, given how vaccine-skeptical people tend to view him.
Biden has dispatched Francis Collins, Director of the National Institute of Health, to Fox News, but he will be retiring in a month or so, and his name carries much less weight. The same can be applied to Biden’s Surgeon General, Vivek Murthy, who has also appeared on Fox, but is simply not as visible or involved in Covid-19 efforts (as Fauci) and carries far less name recognition, just like Collins. Murthy was not in the photo Biden released of his Covid-19 team meeting in the Oval Office to discuss the “Omicron” variant of Covid-19.
The Biden team has continuously sung the praises of Fauci, with one official recently stating that “since the beginning of this pandemic, Americans across the country and of every background have looked to Dr. Fauci for honest and direct answers to some of the toughest questions our country currently faces. He has been an invaluable resource to the President, the COVID response team, and to the American people, which is why he blankets media almost every day of the week.”
Fauci’s influence has even reached the point where Biden himself joked that Fauci is the real president, to the amusement of nobody. Yet while Fauci continuously makes TV appearances (and even has his own movie with a hilariously disproportionate reviewer rating), it seems that facing the heat on Fox is something he’ll continue to take a pass on.
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