In a May 24 policy memo, the Republican Study Committee (RSC) argued that if Republicans take back Congress in November 2022, holding "radical" public health officials like Dr. Anthony Fauci accountable must be a "major oversight priority" for the party.
Once a figure trusted by Republicans and Democrats alike, Republicans have increasingly balked at Fauci's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Several Republican lawmakers, most prominently Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), have quarreled openly with Fauci, accusing him of lying intentionally and of attempting to seize powers that should belong to Congress under the Constitution. In one official email, Paul attached an image showing Fauci's face with the caption, "Fire Fauci."
Now the RSC, a GOP research group comprising several sitting Republican House members, is demanding that GOP leadership take a strong stance against Fauci and his allies if they take back Congress in the 2022 midterms.
"Before the New Normal™, the most dreaded symptoms of flu season were fever, sniffles, and cough," the RSC wrote in a May 23 news release. "Now, as families prepare for the coming winter and corresponding flu seasons (or growing cases of Monkey Pox), Americans have something much worse to fear: Government health officials."
"Far-Left activists have taken over our public health agencies, abused their power, undermined the public's trust, and wreaked havoc on our nation," the news release continued.
The RSC pointed out that the NIH funded 257 grants to study social disparities related to COVID-19, but only four grants to study how the virus spreads.
"Even worse," the release continued, "President Biden's budget includes $100 MILLION EACH for the CDC and NIH to fight 'climate change.'"
"If we want to ever restore trust in these institutions and preserve our once-cherished freedoms and liberties, radicals like Dr. Fauci must be held accountable and our public health agencies be reformed," the RSC demanded. "If Republicans don't use congressional oversight powers to do so, we will be giving far-left bureaucrats a blank check to shut the country down whenever they want."
In a policy memo, the RSC expanded on these points.
"Trust in the public health bureaucracy is at a historic low," the memorandum began. "Americans rightly feel that Washington bureaucrats have abandoned common sense and the common good for political purposes."
"During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Left embraced Rahm Emmanuel’s famous quip, 'never let a good crisis go to waste.' At first, many of their policies went unchallenged. But public health authorities soon started issuing nonsensical, contradictory directives and embracing partisan rhetoric.
"These directives increasingly burdened Americans but had no obvious effect on the spread of COVID," the memo stated. "When Americans pointed this out, authorities responded with censorship, not evidence, and commanded them to 'follow the science.' Dr. Fauci clarified what he meant when he declared, 'I am the Science.'"
The memo continued, stating that many Americans realized that left-wing bureaucrats had "twisted the term 'public health' into a catch-all for leftist policies that limited their basics liberties."
Concluding the memorandum, the RSC wrote: "The CDC and NIH have strayed far from their original missions. The CDC was founded to combat infectious diseases. The NIH’s established mission is to seek fundamental knowledge to enhance health, lengthen life, and reduce illness and disability. Instead, both agencies have been influenced by an ideological public health academia and advance the Left’s war on American culture.
"Conservatives would be wise to root out this institutional rot at these institutions and return them to their core missions," the RSC stated.
Fauci and the NIH did not respond to a request for comment.