Fauci praises Trump for recommending vaccines, admits he was ‘stunned’ by the backlash

'I was a bit dismayed when former President Trump came out and made that statement, and his followers booed him, which I was stunned by that,' said Fauci.

Fauci praises Trump for recommending vaccines, admits he was ‘stunned’ by the backlash
AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File
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Dr. Anthony Fauci, the medical advisor to the White House on all matters relating to the pandemic, is lavishing praise onto former President Donald Trump for his call for Americans to get vaccinated and take booster shots. Fauci says he was “stunned” by the negative reaction Trump received over his advice.

Trump, a long-time supporter of the COVID-19 vaccines that he helped create, has been vocally opposed to vaccine mandates and mask mandates.

“I think that his continuing to say that people should get vaccinated and articulating that to them, in my mind is a good thing,” Fauci said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.” “I hope he keeps it up. … We’ll take anything we can get about getting people vaccinated.”

“I was a bit dismayed when former President Trump came out and made that statement, and his followers booed him, which I was stunned by that,” said Fauci. “I mean, given the fact of how popular he is with that group, that they would boo him, which tells me how recalcitrant they are about being told what they should do.”

Trump, who spearheaded Operation Warp Speed, which kickstarted the development of the vaccines at the start of the pandemic, has been heavily criticized by the mainstream media for perceived opposition to the vaccine.

Last week, Trump said everyone should support vaccines, but voiced his opposition to vaccine mandates.

“You have to embrace it. You don’t have to do it, and there can’t be mandates and all those things, but you have to embrace it,” Trump said in an interview with Fox News.

“It’s a matter of getting people out to, ideally, get the vaccine. If you have the mandate, the mandate will destroy people’s lives — it destroys people’s lives, just as the vaccine saves people,” he said. “I think that it’s really a question of tone. It’s a question of trust, and hopefully, the people that have had COVID, hopefully they will be given credit for that.”

Trump faced boos from a small portion of the crowd during his recent “History Tour” with former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly when he announced he had taken a booster shot. He chastised those booing him, describing them as a “very tiny group.”

The former president, who contracted COVID-19 last year, encouraged the audience to get vaccinated, and noted that his administration “did something that was historic” to create vaccines in record time.

Biden, who has been reticent in giving Trump credit for his accomplishment, recently changed his tune when he thanked Trump and his administration for getting it done.

“Thanks to the prior administration and our scientific community, America’s one of the first countries to get the vaccine,” Biden said in a speech last Tuesday. “Thanks to my administration and the hard work of Americans, we led a rollout [that] made America among the world leaders and getting shots and arms.”

Trump, in return, expressed surprise that Biden had credited him.

“I’m very appreciative of that — I was surprised to hear it,” Trump said on Fox News. “I think it was a terrific thing, and I think it makes a lot of people happy….I think he did something very good. You know, it has to be a process of healing in this country, and that will help a lot.”

“I may have been the vehicle, but we all did this together,” he said. “When we came up with these incredible vaccines — three of them — and therapeutics, we did a tremendous job, and we should never disparage them. We should be really happy about it because we’ve all saved millions and millions of lives all over the world.”

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