Donald Trump’s administration has been blocking Dr. Anthony Fauci from appearing on television interviews with CBS News for the last three months, a network anchor said on Sunday.
Margaret Brennan, moderator of Face the Nation, said on Sunday that the administration has been preventing Fauci and other experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from appearing on the network’s shows.
The message, which was also shared on the show’s Twitter account, said that the administration has not approved requests for appearances by Fauci in recent months and has approved nothing from the CDC.
.@margbrennan: "We think it's important for our viewers to hear from Dr. Anthony Fauci and the @CDCgov
But we have not been able to get our requests for Dr. Fauci approved by the Trump administration in the last three months. And the CDC not at all. We will continue our efforts" pic.twitter.com/ZLDYHU2anY
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) July 5, 2020
As Newsweek noted, Fauci has given a number of other interviews during that time, along with other top health experts within the Trump administration. But other networks have reported difficulties in securing interviews with top health experts within the Trump administration, especially recently.
On Friday, CNN reported that the administration had not been approving any interview requests for Fauci, whose last television interview was on June 12. Fauci has made some appearances on podcasts and webcasts during that time.
A Trump administration official told CNN that it was dangerous to keep the federal government’s top public health experts away from interviews.
“Now is the time to be sending a strong public health message,” the official said, noting the surge of coronavirus cases, especially in the south and southwest.
Donald Trump has been criticized for making statements that contradict public health experts on the coronavirus, including a recent claim that the outbreak will go away suddenly and that the rise in cases is due to an increase in testing.
In a series of tweets posted on the Fourth of July, Trump appeared to blame the increases on more testing and suggested that the news was sharing false or misleading information about the outbreak.
“Cases, Cases, Cases! If we didn’t test so much and so successfully, we would have very few cases,” Trump wrote.
“If you test 40,000,000 people, you are going to have many cases that, without the testing (like other countries), would not show up every night on the Fake Evening News.”
The United States has seen a sharp rise in cases over the course of the last two weeks, with many of the increases coming in states where governors followed Trump’s suggestion to re-open economies at a time when public health experts said it was not yet safe to do so. The states of Florida and Texas have seen particularly steep increases.