Kentucky Senator Rand Paul reportedly threatened National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Dr. Anthony Fauci with felony for lying under oath after the latter denied involvement in the funding of gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology during the Senate Hearing on the government's COVID-19 response on Tuesday.
The Gateway Pundit said there were "fireworks" in the exchange of tense responses between Paul and Fauci during the hearing when the discussion already centered on the gain-of-research funding received by the Wuhan Laboratory through the National Institutes of Health. Fauci denied Paul's claims of his involvement despite being under oath and despite evidence on the matter.
"There will be responsibility for those who funded the lab, including yourself," Paul said.
"I totally resent the lie that you are now propagating, Senator." Fauci retorted.
The senator then pointed out that Fauci was under oath and would be subject to felony for "lying to Congress."
"Dr. Fauci, as you are aware it is a crime to lie to Congress, Section 1001 of the US Criminal Code. Critics say a felony and a five-year penalty for lying to Congress," Paul stressed.
"On your last trip to our committee on May 11th, you stated that the NIH has not ever and does not now fund 'gain of function" research to the Wuhan Institute of Virology," he added. "And yet, 'gain of function' was done entirely at the Wuhan Institute."
Paul, who uploaded the video of the hearing in his YouTube Channel, announced in Twitter that Fauci was caught lying during the hearing.
In the video, Paul can be seen and heard reading from a paper, entitled "Discovery of a Rich Gene Pool of Bat SARS-Related Coronaviruses," about Wuhan scientist Dr. Shi Zhengli who credited the NIH for providing funds for the research. Paul said Shi, known at China's "bat woman," indicated the amount that the NIH gave for the project.
Paul explained that according to the paper, the Chinese scientist "took two bat coronavirus genes, spike genes, and combined them with a SARS-related backbone to create new viruses that are not found in nature."
"These lab-created viruses were then shown to replicate in humans," Paul said. "These experiments combine genetic information from different coronaviruses that infect animals but not humans to create novel, artificial viruses able to infect human cells."
"Viruses that in nature only infect animals were manipulated in the Wuhan lab to gain the function of infecting humans," Paul said. "This research fits the definition of the research that the NIH said was subject to the pause in 2014 to 2017 -a pause in funding on gain of function."
In Rutgers University molecular biologist Dr. Richard Ebright's words, as quoted by Paul, "this is high-risk research that creates new, potential pandemic pathogens that exist only in the lab, not in nature."
"This research matches, indeed epitomizes the definition of gain of function research, done entirely in Wuhan, for which there was supposed to be a federal pause."
Last May, Paul alleged that Fauci is culpable for the COVID-19 pandemic in a Senate hearing conducted by the Health, Education, Labor, and Pension Committee. Fauci denied in that hearing his involvement, as well as, his agency's involvement with the gain-of-function research conducted in the Wuhan laboratory that was said to have led to the coronavirus pandemic. Paul was referring to documents that showed the NIH has granted funding to the laboratory through EcoHealth Alliance.
"The person they hired to investigate the lab for the WHO perspective is the guy who gave the money. So NIH gave the money to EcoHealth. The head of EcoHealth--they got him to investigate whether Wuhan was doing anything inappropriate in their lab. But if they were then wouldn't he be culpable?" Paul said in an interview with Fox News immediately after the hearing in May.
The Gateway Pundit pointed out that, based on the documents, Fauci would be responsible for the death of tens of thousands of Americans. The media outlet stressed that Fauci "withheld an effective treatment in HCQ in treating the disease from Americans" and called the doctor a "megalomaniac."
In addition, CNBC reported that Fauci replied he will not retract what he said in April and said that he "have never lied" most especially "not before Congress." The doctor also stated that Paul does not know what he is "talking about" because the study he was referring to did not constitute the gain-of-function research.
But Paul went on to explain that what he is pointing out is the connection Fauci and his agency has with the Wuhan laboratory that the doctor "can't get away from."
"You are implying that what we did resulted in the deaths of individuals. I totally resent that, and if anyone is lying here, senator, it is you," Fauci rebutted.