Biden asked Fauci to serve as chief medical adviser
President-elect Joe Biden on Thursday asked Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious diseases expert, to serve as his chief medical adviser.
Biden told CNN’s Jake Tapper in an interview that he asked Fauci to serve in the position in addition to staying on in his longtime role as the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
“I asked him to stay on the exact same role he’s had for the past several presidents, and I asked him to be a chief medical adviser for me as well, and be part of the COVID team,” Biden told the network in his first joint interview with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris since the election.
Fauci is one of the most prominent members of President Trump’s coronavirus task force and polls show he is among the most trusted public officials when it comes to the coronavirus. But his media appearances, during which he urged Americans to stay home, wear masks and take other precautions, often put him at odds with Trump.
Fauci was also a critic of Scott Atlas, who advised Trump on the pandemic before he resigned Wednesday. Atlas pushed back on many coronavirus restrictions, arguing that young and healthy people should be allowed to resume their lives as normal because they are less likely to become seriously ill if they contract the virus.
The news comes as coronavirus cases across the country spike during the holiday season. Fauci and other public health experts are urging Americans to avoid travel and large gatherings as much as possible, in addition to practicing social distancing and wearing a mask.
Biden also said during the interview that he plans on asking the American public to wear a mask in an effort to reduce the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Just 100 days to mask, not forever. 100 days. And I think we’ll see a significant reduction,” the president-elect said.