Fox News anchor Chris Wallace pressed Dr. Anthony Fauci during a “Fox News Sunday” interview about “garbled messages” coming out of President Joe Biden’s administration on schools reopening.
“President Biden came in saying that they were going to run things more smoothly, that they were going to follow the science, but in the last couple of weeks, there have been some garbled messages coming out of this administration,” Wallace said.
While the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has stated that schools can reopen without all teachers necessarily being vaccinated against COVID-19, Wallace played Fauci a “somewhat different message” from Vice President Kamala Harris.
“That sounds like Vice President Harris was following the teachers unions, not the science,” Wallace said.
“No, Chris, you want to parse words, I was listening very carefully,” Fauci responded. “What Vice President Harris said, it should be a priority. She did not say it’s a sine qua non that unless you get vaccinated you cannot come into the school and teach.”
“So what we’re saying, and let me state it clearly because I believe strongly that it is completely compatible with … what the vice president said is that clearly we want to make the vaccination of teachers a high priority.”
Fauci insisted that vaccinations are “not a requirement” for schools to reopen, but are “a priority.”
“I think the only point I was making is she refused to say it’s not a requirement when she was asked by Savannah several times,” Wallace said.
The Fox News anchor went on to point out a “contradiction” between Biden and White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on how many days a week schools should be open.
“The president there was contradicting his own press secretary,” he said. “Is it a mistake, frankly, for politicians and even for public health experts like yourself to do too much projecting?” (RELATED: Jen Psaki Dodges Question From ABC’s Jon Karl About Whether Cuomo Represents ‘Gold Standard For Leadership’)
Fauci agreed that projections are often altered by “mitigating circumstances,” pointing out the delays in vaccine distribution caused by ice storms.