On Tuesday, it was clearer than ever that Trump has finished listening to Fauci or anyone who says anything other than great things, and we should go full speed. In an interview about Fox, Trump openly stated that he disagreed with Fauci, and then disparaged Fauci's knowledge of how to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Well, I think we're in a good place," Trump said. "I disagree with him. Dr. Fauci said don't wear masks and now he says wear them. "That was not the end of Trump's efforts to dismiss Fauci's knowledge. "And he said numerous things. Don't close China. Don't forbid China. I did it anyway. I didn't listen to my experts and I banned China. We would have been in a much worse shape. "
This is not the first time Trump has blamed others for failing to address the pandemic. As early as April, Trump claimed that "very good experts" had told him that COVID-19 "would never affect the United States". At that point, Trump did not accuse Fauci by name. Now he is.
If the evidence suggests that although Trump continued to use him as a punching bag, Fauci was given the resources and freedom to direct a government response to the virus, his stay in the White House could make sense. However, this is clearly not the case. The handful of test sites sponsored by the federal government were closed. There are no more. Efforts to track down cases have overwhelmed the states. Trump is not trying to help. The need to wear masks couldn't be clearer. Trump almost alone ruins this effort. The idea of reopening schools in the face of growing cases is ridiculous. The White House edicts one after the other, making it clear that if students don't march into the fire, money will be cut, foreign students deported, and nationwide education systems can fail.
It is obvious that Trump sees the COVID-19 crisis as another opportunity to operate through the shock doctrine. He has no intention of doing things better because he is not interested in doing things better. Instead, the White House now sees the crisis as an opportunity. An opportunity to give ICE even more power and limit all types of immigration. An opportunity to smash public education between impossible requirements. An opportunity to marginalize government and local budgets and infrastructure; to starve any form of public support for funds and to face overwhelming demand; intentionally trigger a crisis in evictions and foreclosures.
Trump has not only surrendered to the corona virus, he is eagerly feeding victims. By remaining in his post, following restrictions on his appearance, moderating his statements, Fauci cannot at best take full advantage of his knowledge of the nation.
This is a difficult requirement. It is almost certainly unfair. Asking someone to get out of the White House and clearly oppose Trump means that he submits to a thousand derogatory tweets, is despised in a network of right-wing radio and social media threats, and his name is regularly trampled on Fox. Even those who spoke out against Trump months after they left were publicly attacked.
But Fauci may be the only person whose voice can still be heard with Trump. Every day he stays, the value of his voice decreases. He can now stand up, point out the deficiencies in the response of the White House, ask Congress to set up a strong central program for testing and case management, clearly express the need for a national mask mandate, and insist that no school be opened unless it is The area meets strict guidelines, making it clear that healthcare workers and key workers of all types need better protection. Or not.
Dr. Fauci can break with the White House and deliberately oppose Donald Trump's efforts not only to refuse to act, but to exacerbate the crisis. Or he can remain a prop at Trump's side. Someone who is supposed to be stamped out for the occasional appearance, but whose knowledge and evidence are wiped off without thinking. He cannot have it both ways.