Dr. Anthony Fauci won’t show up in person in the Senate after all.
The top pandemic doctor decided not to bend the rules by showing up in person for a Senate hearing set for Tuesday on the government’s response to the pandemic.
He changed his mind after initially vowing to appear in person despite being exposed to a top White House staffer who has tested positive for the virus.
“Fauci … will appear by videoconference,” along with other officials, CNN reported.
Fauci, who says he is observing a previously unknown “modified quarantine” regimen, has said he would wear a face mask and observe social distancing requirements when he answers questions from senators.
He admits having what he calls “low risk” contact with Katie Miller, the spokeswoman for Vice President Mike Pence who tested positive on Friday.
Fauci, who has tested negative for COVID-19 so far, says he will mostly work from home for the next two weeks and will only go into work at the National Institutes for Health if he is alone in the office.
The heads of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as the Food and Drug Administration are both staying home due to the same supposedly low-risk contact with Katie Miller.
Katie Miller’s husband, White House aide Stephen Miller, will stay out of the White House until his coronavirus infection status can be determined.
A military officer who works as a valet to President Donald Trump has also tested positive for the deadly virus.
Despite what appears to be a mini-outbreak in the White House, Pence and Trump are taking no new precautions and will not be isolating from aides or one another in any way. Some health experts question if it is wise for the two most powerful men in the nation to have extensive contact with one another during the pandemic.
Fauci’s appearance will mark the first time he has been seen by the vast majority of Americans since Trump effectively scrapped his daily nationally televised press conferences.
The White House wants to focus more on reopening the economy and hopes to distract attention from the sharply rising death toll from the still-spreading pandemic, which has already killed 80,000 Americans and counting.
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