President Donald Trump on Monday told a crowd calling for the ouster of Dr. Anthony Fauci that they might just get their wish.
As part of his breakneck, high-energy closing tour heading into Tuesday’s vote, Trump held a rally in Miami that began late Sunday and carried into Monday.
Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has been a prime, but often controversial, White House adviser in the battle against the coronavirus. Fauci’s name was chanted by the rally crowd after Trump contrasted the future under him and under Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
“This election is a choice between a crippling depression or a historic moment in government,” Trump said during his Miami rally.
Referencing a potential Biden election, Trump said “all those 401(k)s, they’re going to go right down the tubes. Throw it out.”
“It’s a choice between a deadly Biden lockdown — he wants to lock down the country,” Trump said.
After the crowd finished booing, Trump noted that he had just left states where lockdowns had been in place, saying “They’re not happy about it, I’ll tell you right now.”
#BREAKING: President Trump hints he’ll fire Dr. Fauci following the election.
Crowd at Trump rally chant, “Fire Fauci! Fire Fauci!”
Trump: “Don’t tell anybody but let me wait ’til a little bit after the election. I appreciate the advice.” pic.twitter.com/1mBxTBKvig
— The Hill (@thehill) November 2, 2020
Trump suggested that lockdowns had become a political strategy.
“You know what’s going to happen on November fourth, the day after? They’re going to say, ‘All right, we’ll open up.’ That’s why they locked the place,” Trump said.
Trump said that under his administration, “We’re going to have a safe vaccine that ends the pandemic.”
Trump then pointed his finger at the news media for inducing panic.
“You turn on the news and its COVID, COVID, COVID, COVID, COVID,” he said, later adding, “Here’s what happens November fourth. You won’t hear too much about it.”
At that point, about a minute into the video in the Twitter post above, the crowd began to chant “Fire Fauci.”
After the chant had subsided, Trump replied to his supporters.
“Don’t tell anybody, but let me wait until after the election,” he said to an eruption of cheering.
“I appreciate the advice,” Trump added. “I appreciate it.”
Trump then offered a brief critique of Fauci.
“He’s been wrong on a lot,” Trump said. “He’s a nice man. He’s been wrong on a lot.
“‘Do not under any circumstances wear a mask,’ he says. ‘Do not close up to China,’ he says. Then later on he says that President Trump saved tens of thousands of lives because I closed early,” Trump said.
Trump then pivoted to focus on Biden.
“But how about this? How about Sleepy Joe? I close and he calls me xenophobic. I said, ‘give me a definition of that, Joe,'” Trump said. “He didn’t know how to. He had no idea what it meant.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.