The most prominent member of the president’s coronavirus task force has been given an around-the-clock security detail following numerous death threats.
Dr. Anthony Fauci is getting the increased security at the request of the Health and Human Services inspector general, who asked the U.S. Marshals Service for the protection.
A source also confirmed to CNN last week the presence of several members of the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Police Department stationed at all times around Fauci’s home in the district. The source added the stepped up visible police presence was a response to growing threats to Fauci’s safety, though the source of the threats was not identified.
During the White House coronavirus task force briefing with reporters on Wednesday, Fauci was asked whether he orWhite House coronavirus response coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx, who also serves on the task force, had received threats of any kind or whether they had been assigned a security detail. He said he was not able to answer.
“Anything that has to do with security detail I would have to have you (ask your question) to the inspector general of HHS,” he said, referencing the Department of Health and Human Services.
Trump assured the press that Fauci “doesn’t need security. Everybody loves him.” But law enforcement isn’t so sure. Fauci’s opposition to opening the economy and strong public dissent from the president, even contradicting him at times when he’s standing just feet away, hasn’t sat well with Trump supporters who see him as an enemy.
“Guy was a Hillary mole,” pro-Trump podcaster Bill Mitchell tweeted on Monday.
“Disrespectful,” read a Monday headline on the right-wing Gateway Pundit, comparing Fauci to ousted general Stanley McChrystal.
The narrative has even started to migrate to Fox News, a key source of information for the president.
“He’ll still have a job at the end of this, whatever happens,” Fox News host Steve Hilton argued during his Sunday night monologue on “The Next Revolution.” “Our ruling class and their TV mouthpieces whipping up fear over this virus, they can afford an indefinite shutdown.”
How that translates into credible threats is a question no one is answering. But these days, you just never know who’s being a blowhard on Twitter and who’s a deranged, would-be assassin.
It doesn’t matter if you’re fearful of a “deep state conspiracy” or a fascist plot to take over America, this pandemic has brought out the absolute worst — and best — of humanity. While there are countless examples of goodness and charity and compassion all over the nation, it only takes a few nutcases with guns to turn the fear and panic into violent chaos.