Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto had an intense confrontation with Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) on Thursday over his demand that the White House coronavirus task force disband, calling the Trumpian congressman out over his home state’s exploding COVID-19 cases and his own lack of health expertise.
Biggs recently called for the Trump administration to scrap its pandemic task force over his belief that its public health experts, namely Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx, were undermining President Donald Trump as the president pushes for the economy to continue to reopen.
Interviewing Biggs on Thursday’s broadcast of Your World with Neil Cavuto, the veteran Fox anchor—who has frequently been the target of the president’s ire over his critical Trump coverage—immediately pressed Biggs on whether he thought masks could help stem the spread of coronavirus.
“I have to tell you, I’m reticent to believe that if a mask works so well, then why is L.A. spiking and surging with COVID cases when they’ve had a mandatory mask regulation in effect for seven weeks now,” the Arizona congressman replied. “There is no empirical evidence that that is the case.”
Cavuto, meanwhile, pointed out that while localities may have had mask ordinances, the issue may have been enforcement and getting residents to follow the guidelines. Biggs, however, insisted that the actual problem was that masks themselves aren’t very effective, despite copious studies showing otherwise.
“You don’t think it has any benefit at all?” Cavuto shot back. In recent days, Republicans and even some of Trump’s staunchest Fox allies have attempted to get the president to embrace mask-wearing to keep the economy open amid a spike in cases.
The Fox host pivoted to Biggs’ demand that the task force shutter, asking the Freedom Caucus chair whether or not he thought it was risky.
“No, I don’t. I appreciate what the vice president has done and I think he is done a great job,” he replied before criticizing Fauci, complaining that the top infectious disease expert has been “inconsistent” with his message.
Cavuto, however, implored Biggs to “forget Dr. Fauci for a second” and think about what’s happening in his home state, which is currently suffering from the worst coronavirus surge in the nation.
“You have hospitalizations and ICU bed use, the highest of this crisis,” Cavuto exclaimed. “You are telling people to get rid of it? People are listening to you and you’re saying we can ease up!”
After Biggs accused the Fox anchor of “cherry-picking data,” Cavuto retorted he was doing no such thing before accusing Biggs of just wanting to get rid of the commission because it is saying things he doesn’t like.
The far-right lawmaker argued that they were “undermining” Trump, prompting Cavuto to ask whether it was the president’s job to have health experts he defers to. Biggs, meanwhile, downplayed Birx and Fauci’s expertise by wondering aloud about when they last saw patients.
“When’s the last time you have?” Cavuto snarked back.
“I’m not a trained physician,” Biggs replied.
“But you’re telling the ones who are to get out!” Cavuto shouted in response. “To get off the commission!”