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The House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic held its first hearing on the origins of the pandemic on Wednesday.
Lawmakers focused on a Jan. 31, 2020, email from Scripps Research Institute virologist Dr. Kristian Andersen to Dr. Anthony Fauci, then-director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Andersen said he and several of his colleagues believed the virus could be manmade.
According to Fox News, Andersen wrote “some of COVID-19’s features look possibly engineered.” He added, “The genome is inconsistent with expectations from evolutionary theory.”
Immediately, Fauci took steps to shut down the conversation about the lab leak theory among members of the science community. The following day, Fauci and then-National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins organized a conference call with at least 11 virologists including Andersen, according to a Sunday memo from the House Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic.
The memo stated, “New evidence released by the Select Subcommittee today suggests that Dr. Fauci ‘prompted’ the drafting of a publication that would ‘disprove’ the lab leak theory, the authors of this paper skewed available evidence to achieve that goal.”
In January 2022, Fox News obtained notes from the call that revealed Fauci’s deliberate decision to suppress the lab leak theory of origin. His stated reason was concern over “how the public would react to news of possible Chinese government involvement.”
According to Fox, Collins worried that “‘science and international harmony’ could be harmed and accusations of China’s involvement could distract top researchers.”
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