Lincoln Project asks in new ad if you trust Trump or Fauci amid attacks

The Lincoln Project, a Republican anti-Trump super PAC, asks viewers in an ad released Wednesday whether they trust President TrumpDonald John TrumpTeachers union launches 0K ad buy calling for education funding in relief bill FDA head pledges 'we will not cut corners' on coronavirus vaccine Let our values drive COVID-19 liability protection MORE or Anthony FauciAnthony FauciPublic health expert: 50 percent effective coronavirus vaccine would be 'better than what we have now' Overnight Health Care: Trump to take executive action after coronavirus talks collapse | Vaccine official says he'd resign if pressured politically Fauci's DC neighbors put up 'thank you' signs in their yards MORE as the nation's top infectious diseases expert comes under attack from administration officials.

The ad's narrator praises Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, calling him an “American hero” and a “natural leader.” His work under six presidents, including under President George H.W. Bush, who celebrated Fauci for his research on AIDS, is also highlighted.

“In a time when truth is under assault, he’s always been straight with us,” the narrator says, citing Fauci’s March testimony in front of Congress predicting that the pandemic “will get worse.”

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The ad counters that “President Trump lied,” referring to his repeated claims that the coronavirus will “like a miracle ... disappear.”

“Now Donald Trump is attacking Dr. Fauci,” the narrator says. “Why? Because Trump failed America, so he does what he always does: attack and blame.”

The Lincoln Project then poses a question to viewers: “So who do you trust? Donald the Dope? ... Or the doctor?”

Reed Galen, a co-founder for The Lincoln Project, said in a statement that Fauci is a “profoundly respected physician, whose work has improved the lives of millions of Americans.” 

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“President Trump’s incompetence has cost 130,000 Americans their lives, sickened millions more and wrecked our economy,” he added.

Fauci’s approach to the coronavirus pandemic has at times run counter to Trump’s, with the infectious diseases expert pushing for more cautious reopening of the U.S. after shutdowns. The president’s administration instead sought to reopen more quickly to combat the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.

The White House has become more vocal in its criticism of Fauci in recent weeks, with trade adviser Peter Navarro accusing Fauci of being “wrong about everything I have interacted with him on” in a USA Today op-ed. 

Trump himself said in an interview with Fox News host Sean HannitySean Patrick HannitySunday shows preview: White House, congressional Democrats unable to breach stalemate over coronavirus relief Tennessee primary battle turns nasty for Republicans CNN's Ana Navarro to host Biden roundtable on making 'Trump a one-term president' MORE last week that Fauci was a “nice man” but that “he’s made a lot of mistakes.”

The Lincoln Project was launched last year by a group of anti-Trump conservatives, including attorney George ConwayGeorge Thomas ConwayLincoln Project ad dubs Jared Kushner the 'Secretary of Failure' Hillicon Valley: Trump raises idea of delaying election, faces swift bipartisan pushback | Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google release earnings reports | Senators ask Justice Department to investigate TikTok, Zoom Meme group joins with Lincoln Project in new campaign against Trump MORE, who is married to White House counselor Kellyanne ConwayKellyanne Elizabeth ConwayLincoln Project ad dubs Jared Kushner the 'Secretary of Failure' Watchdog group accuses Stephen Miller of violating Hatch Act with Biden comments Hillicon Valley: Trump raises idea of delaying election, faces swift bipartisan pushback | Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google release earnings reports | Senators ask Justice Department to investigate TikTok, Zoom MORE. The super PAC has released several ads in recent weeks blasting Trump as the 2020 presidential election ramps up.