Before his recent absence from radio waves, Fauci appeared regularly in national news programs to update the American people on the country’s fight against coronavirus.
Fauci was present at Trump’s “Operation Warp Speed” briefing last Friday when the administration detailed a plan to distribute a possible vaccine. He wore a mask and stood behind the President. But he made no comment, unlike other briefings and events where he was on the front line.
Instead, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, who oversees the NIH, took the initiative to discuss a potential vaccine, appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union” and CBS News’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday.
Spokesmen for NIH, NIAID and the White House, who coordinated the interviews for the coronavirus task force, offered no comment when asked why Fauci suddenly stopped giving interviews.
Fauci, however, offered a comment to the Washington Post for a story that was published Wednesday after CNN asked the White House and NIH for his absence.
President Trump, who previously held freewheeling press conferences, stopped doing it every day following an effort between helpers and allies who believed that briefings had politically damaged him.
And in recent weeks, the White House has reoriented its message about the country’s reopening amid the economic chaos caused by the virus.
While the President and the White House have pushed for the economy to reopen, some experts have warned that it may be too early.