The right has reaccelerated its attacks on Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a White House adviser on the countryâ€™s COVID-19 response, as the omicron variant has emerged as a potential threat.
â€œIf you havenâ€™t checked in on Tony Fauci lately, you may be a little surprised to discover what heâ€™s become,â€ Carlson said on â€œTucker Carlson Tonight.â€ â€œIf you tuned in a couple years ago you may recall Fauci as a conventional public health official. He wore button-down shirts, he gave careful, precise answers that suggested deep medical knowledge. No more. After two years of being nonstop media adulation, Tony Fauci has morphed into an even shorter version of Benito Mussolini.â€
Carlson went even further, calling Fauci a self-styled â€œdeity accountable to no oneâ€ who would dare to â€œdemonize a sitting senator.â€
That would be Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who said Fauci should be prosecuted for his testimony on COVID-19 research to Congress. To which Fauci replied, â€œI have to laugh at that. I should be prosecuted? What happened on Jan. 6, Senator?â€
Carlson twisted Fauciâ€™s burn of Cruz, who voted against confirming Joe Bidenâ€™s electoral victory before the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection attempt to overturn the results, into more attacks.
Cruz had also accused Fauci of distorting â€œscience and facts in order to exercise authoritarian control over millions of Americans.â€ Perhaps that helped trigger Carlsonâ€™s comparing Fauci to the fascist dictator.