Maryland GOP governor: Fauci has 'never let me' down

Maryland GOP governor: Fauci has 'never let me' down
© getty: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R)

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) on Monday warned against the idea of the White House sidelining Anthony FauciAnthony FauciTillis appears to reinforce question about COVID-19 death toll Overnight Health Care: Trump signs largely symbolic pre-existing conditions order amid lawsuit | White House puts off action on surprise medical bills | Rising coronavirus cases spark fears of harsh winter NY health officials to review any vaccine approved by Trump MORE, the nation’s top infectious diseases expert, saying Fauci had been more responsive to the state’s coronavirus needs than President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says voters should choose who nominates Supreme Court justice Trump, Biden will not shake hands at first debate due to COVID-19 Pelosi: Trump Supreme Court pick 'threatens' Affordable Care Act MORE or Vice President Pence.

Hogan wrote in a USA Today op-ed that in March, as the Washington metro area including Maryland and Virginia showed signs of being a hot spot, he was unable to get a call back from the president and vice president, but was able to get in contact with a number of top health officials to get advice.

“But I spent the first weekend of April on the phone with all the other people who needed to hear about this: Dr. Fauci, Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health; Assistant Health Secretary Adm. Brett Giroir; Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperOvernight Defense: Stopgap spending measure awaits Senate vote | Trump nominates former Nunes aide for intelligence community watchdog | Trump extends ban on racial discrimination training to contractors, military Overnight Defense: Pentagon redirects pandemic funding to defense contractors | US planning for full Afghanistan withdrawal by May | Anti-Trump GOP group puts ads in military papers Official: Pentagon has started 'prudent planning' for full Afghanistan withdrawal by May MORE, and Army Secretary Ryan McCarthyRyan McCarthyOvernight Defense: Trump's battle with Pentagon poses risks in November | Lawmakers launch Fort Hood probe | Military members can't opt out of tax deferral Lawmakers launch investigation into Fort Hood after 28th death this year Overnight Defense: China aims to double nuclear arsenal | Fort Hood commander removed after string of deaths MORE,” he wrote.

ADVERTISEMENT

Fauci, Hogan wrote, promised to raise the issue with the White House coronavirus task force. “And Dr. Fauci never let me or the people of Maryland down,” Hogan wrote. “I shudder to think where our country would be today without him.”

Hogan emphasized that public health experts should not be the only source leaders rely on during crises, but that figures like Fauci are vital to provide a “clear-eyed view of the evidence as we know it at the time — even if we don’t always want to hear it.”

“With some states experiencing massive spikes, we need to know the science to help contain the spread. As the public experiences fatigue from months of social distancing, we need steady and reliable voices who can remind us to stay vigilant,” Hogan wrote. “And as we work to open school in the fall safely, we need the input of public health experts to guide how we can make it work. We need Dr. Fauci more than ever.”

The op-ed comes as Trump has said his and Fauci’s relationship remains good but called the infectious diseases expert “a little bit of an alarmist,” while White House trade adviser Peter Navarro published a piece also in the USA Today criticizing Fauci, which the White House has since said was unauthorized.