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During a White House briefing on Thursday, press secretary Jen Psaki defended Dr. Anthony Fauci against accusations that he lied to Congress about funding for labs in China. Psaki refuted that claim and when asked by a Fox News reporter if Fauci’s job was safe, she responded, “Correct.”
- Thank you, Jen. First, on COVID origins. You've said from that podium that under no circumstance would President Biden ever fire Dr. Fauci. Is that still the case since Fauci told Congress the NIH never funded gain-of-function research for coronaviruses in Wuhan, but documents published by "The Intercept" suggests that is not true, which would mean that he misled Congress?
JEN PSAKI: Well, first, I would say that NIH has refuted that reporting, and I would point you to that. But let me give you some highlights of that. NIH has never approved any research that would make a coronavirus more dangerous to humans.
A reminder that there are previous and different coronaviruses than the existing one we're battling. And the body of science produced by this research demonstrates that the bat coronavirus sequences published from that work NIH supported were not COVID, the strain, COVID-2 strain. So what he said was correct.
- So his job is safe?
JEN PSAKI: Correct.