New information information on the global COVID-19 pandemic was discovered during a leading virologist’s testimony to the House Oversight Committee hearing Tuesday. Danish virologist Dr. Kristian Andersen, who co-authored the highly influential paper “The Proximal Origin of SARS-CoV-2” published in March 2020 that argued the lab-leak theory was not “plausible” had a change of tune when confronted by Congress.
During his appearance, Anderson denied any of his findings were influenced by politics, or an attempt to avoid alienating the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). However, House Republicans obtained messages between Anderson and a colleague from the communications platform ‘slack’ which explain the reality behind Anderson’s actions and writings.
National Review reports of the exchange:
“[G]iven the sh** show that would happen if anyone serious accused the Chinese of even accidental release, my feeling is we should say that given there is no evidence of a specifically engineered virus, we cannot possibly distinguish between natural evolution and escape so we are content with ascribing it to [a] natural process,” Andersen’s colleague, Dr. Andrew Rambaut, wrote to a group of virologists over Slack in February 2020.
“Yup, I totally agree that that’s a very reasonable conclusion. Although I hate when politics is injected into science – but it’s impossible not to, especially given the circumstances,” Andersen replied.
“You are the one with the preferred political narrative. You said right there,” Comer told Andersen after reading the exchange aloud.
Rambaut, a British evolutionary virologist who also co-authored the “Proximal Origins” paper, refused to appear at Tuesday’s hearing. Fellow co-author Edward Holmes, an Australian virologist, also refused to appear.
Anderson’s testimony was to address certain allegations that Dr. Anthony Fauci and his NIH colleagues improperly influenced the paper’s findings. In March, as part of an investigation into the origins of the global pandemic, the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic revealed that Fauci directed and approved the publication of the “Proximal Origins” paper.
National Review continues its report on Tuesday:
Subcommittee Chairman Brad Wenstrup (R., Ohio) released a report ahead of Tuesday’s hearings alleging the paper was a “Cover-Up.”
The report cites a February 1, 2020 meeting during which Andersen and fellow virologists told Fauci that they believed Covid bore the genetic markings of lab manipulation. Just four days after that meeting, the virologists presented Fauci with a draft paper which poured cold water on the lab-leak theory — a reversal the report attributes to interference by Fauci and then-NIH director Dr. Francis Collins.
“On January 31, 2020, Dr. Fauci prompted Proximal Origin, which’s goal was to ‘disprove’ the lab leak theory to avoid blaming China for the COVID-19 pandemic. Proximal Origin employed fatally flawed science to achieve its goal. And, finally, Dr. Collins and Dr. Fauci used Proximal Origin to attempt to kill the lab leak theory.”
“This is the anatomy of a cover-up,” the report argues.
CONTINUE READING: National Review
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Historic House Vote Expels Rep. George Santos Amidst Scandal
In a turn of events, the House of Representatives made history on Friday with a vote to expel Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.), marking the first such expulsion in over two decades. A moment fraught with gravity unfolded as Speaker Mike Johnson wielded his gavel to formalize Santos’ removal, setting a precedent in congressional annals.
Santos, indicted on 23 counts related to wire fraud, identity theft, and other charges, has not faced conviction but stands accused of misusing campaign funds for opulent purchases. The bipartisan vote, tallying 311 to 114, signaled robust support for expulsion, with a marginally higher number of Republicans opting to retain Santos.
Questions loomed as Speaker Johnson left the chamber, his silence leaving the fate of the ongoing government spending battle uncertain. According to reports from Fox News, Democratic Rep. Steny Hoyer emphasized the non-partisan nature of the decision, asserting that members concluded Santos had tarnished the House’s reputation and was unfit for representation.
Within the GOP, conflicting opinions emerged, with Rep. Darrell Issa arguing against expulsion, citing the presumption of innocence. The tight-lipped stance of the House Ethics Committee played a pivotal role in the deliberations.
Conversely, members of the New York Republican delegation, led by Rep. Marc Molinaro, asserted Santos’ commission of crimes, justifying expulsion based on a comprehensive investigation.
Santos himself predicted the outcome in an exclusive morning interview on “FOX & Friends.” This vote not only underlines the House’s rare use of expulsion powers but also sets a critical precedent in handling members facing severe legal challenges.
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