Dr. Anthony Fauci, the United States’ leading expert on infectious diseases, who has been working with the Trump Administration to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus COVID-19, will receive enhanced personal security following threats, the Washington Post reports.
Fauci, 79, who serves as the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has been a firm and outspoken advocate of social distancing and holding the public health guidelines in place as the coronavirus continues to batter at the nation. He is also one of the few top officials who is willing to correct the President’s inaccurate statements made about the pandemic.
According to the Post, it is not clear exactly what kind of threats Fauci has received. However, officials acknowledged that there were concerns about the threats, as well as other communications received from admirers.
As The New York Times notes, Fauci’s push to maintain federal guidelines for social distancing during the pandemic has lead to conspiracy theories online that the longtime scientist is trying to interfere with Trump’s reelection chances this year. These ideas are based on the toll the pandemic has had on the country, due to closed businesses and schools and a suffering economy.
Despite that, Trump has lauded Fauci, saying when asked about the security that it is unneeded because “everybody loves him.”
More recently Trump, who has in the past been accused of downplaying the seriousness of the deadly virus, has taken on some of Fauci’s firmer stances, calling the pandemic a “great national trial unlike any we have ever faced before.”
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