KEY POINTS

  • Joe Biden has tweeted support for Dr. Anthony Fauci after Donald Trump implied he would be fired
  • Trump told a crowd of supporters chanting "fire Fauci" that he was just waiting until after the election
  • The split is an ongoing one: Trump has often attacked Fauci for undermining his claims that COVID-19 is no big deal, and Biden seeks to show Americans that he is the more reliable candidate by supporting scientists

Joe Biden tweeted in support of Dr. Anthony Fauci after Trump implied he'd fire the disease expert after the election. Trump has historically been very critical of Fauci, viewing him and his efforts to get Americans to take COVID-19 seriously as undermining Trump’s administration.

Trump’s comments this time came from a Sunday rally in Florida when the crowd of conservative supporters began chanting, “Fire Fauci.”

"Don’t tell anybody, but let me wait until a little bit after the election," the president responded. "I appreciate the advice."

It’s no surprise that Trump and his supporters are particularly displeased with Fauci. Fauci has been stringently warning Americans about a resurgent COVID-19 in recent days while Trump's administration has tried to play down the recent spikes.

“All the stars are aligned in the wrong place as you go into the fall and winter season, with people congregating at home indoors,” Fauci warned in a Washington Post interview. “You could not possibly be positioned more poorly.”

This is directly at odds with the rhetoric of the Trump campaign. Trump has repeatedly said that the U.S. has “rounded the corner” in COVID-19 cases and told supporters that the virus will “disappear.”

Joe Biden’s campaign saw Trump’s implied firing plans as another opportunity to present Biden as the candidate on the side of the scientists.

This has been a common refrain of his. Speaking about whether he would have faith in a vaccine approved by the Trump administration, Biden said: “I trust vaccines, I trust scientists, but I don’t trust Donald Trump. At this moment, the American people can’t, either.”

Democrat Joe Biden has enjoyed a solid lead over Trump in the national polls for months, but US presidential elections are not decided by the popular vote
Democrat Joe Biden has enjoyed a solid lead over Trump in the national polls for months, but US presidential elections are not decided by the popular vote AFP / MANDEL NGAN
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