Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) Director Anthony Fauci had yet another testy exchange on Thursday - this time, over royalties paid to National Institutes of Health (NIH) employees and the COVID-19 vaccine approval process.
“The NIH continues to refuse to voluntarily divulge the names of scientists who receive royalties and from which companies. Over the period of time from 2010 to 2016, 27 thousand royalty payments were paid to 1,800 NIH employees. [...] Over 193 million was given to these 1,800 employees. Can you tell me that you have not received a royalty from any entity that you ever oversaw the distribution of money and research grants [to]?” Paul asked.
“You know, I don’t know as a fact, but I doubt it,” Fauci responded.
Paul pressed on. “It’s not just about you,” he said. “[...] Can you tell me if anybody on the vaccine approval committees ever received any money from people who make vaccines?”
Fauci appeared livid as he addressed Paul’s question, retorting, “Soundbite Number One, are you gonna let me answer a question? [...] According to the regulations, people who receive royalties are not required to divulge them even on their financial statement according to the Bayh-Dole act.”
“So, let me give you some example,” Fauci continued, “From 2015 to 2020, the only royalties I have was my lab and I made a monoclonal antibody for use in vitro reagent that had nothing to do with patients, and during that period of time, my royalties ranged from $21 a year to $700 a year and the average per year was $191.46.”
“It’s all redacted, and you can’t get information on the 1,800 scientists,” Paul concluded, “So we want to know whether or not people got money from the people who manufactured the vaccine.”
Fauci’s testimony to the U.S. Senate was delivered virtually as the longtime bureaucrat had tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday, despite being fully vaccinated and twice boosted.
Fauci has increasingly faced questions over his guidance during the pandemic. His reversal on the effectiveness of face masks, recommendation that the country be locked down for extended periods of time, and insistence that people be separated from family and friends have all come under fire as America comes to grips with the several crises emerging as the country returns to normalcy.
Namely, rates of addiction, overdoses, and suicide have spiked since the government instituted COVID-19 lockdown measures. Likewise, childhood development for many appears to have been stunted in the era of remote learning and constant masking. Many are directing their anger at Fauci, arguably the biggest proponent of these damaging policies.
Fauci’s integrity and role as a public servant have also been called into question. Sen. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) revealed earlier this year that Fauci had taken home at least $1.7 million in 2020. Even the ethics of Fauci’s experiments over the years have begun to face scrutiny.
Fawning coverage from the mainstream media aside, it seems that Fauci’s days as a respected leader may be numbered.