President Donald Trump suggested to a Florida crowd he may fire Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading expert on infectious diseases, after the election.
Speaking after midnight following a full day of campaigning, the President was complaining about the news media coverage of Covid-19 when the crowd broke out into a “Fire Fauci” chant.
“Don’t tell anybody but let me wait until a little bit after the election,” Trump said to cheers. “I appreciate the advice.”
Later, Trump claimed Fauci is “a nice guy but he’s been wrong a lot.”
Most of the crowd in Florida was not wearing masks; Trump has proceeded with rallies in states with rampant coronavirus outbreaks, believing his message of reopening will resonate with voters.
Trump’s comments come after the White House on Saturday unleashed on Fauci following his comments to the Washington Post that criticized the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic, including Dr. Scott Atlas, whom the President has relied on for advice on handling the coronavirus.
While Trump and Fauci put forward a show of cooperation earlier in the pandemic, their relationship has deteriorated significantly. Fauci has said he no longer briefs the President and has been replaced by Atlas.
As of early Monday morning, more than 9.2 million people across the US have contracted coronavirus, and more than 230,000 people have died.
A “Fire Fauci” chant just erupted at Trump’s rally in Florida
"Don't tell anybody, but let me wait until a little bit after the election,” Trump said in response. pic.twitter.com/oN8X7x1bJc
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) November 2, 2020