Elon Musk welcomes Dr Fauci, White House Covid advisor

Elon Musk violently attacked Dr. Anthony Fauci, the outgoing White House adviser on the Covid-19 pandemic, on Sunday in a tweet that immediately caused controversy.

“My name is Judge/Fauci,” the wealthy Twitter boss wrote in an allusion to the right-wing campaign to sue Dr. Fauci for alleged crimes related to his involvement in the pandemic.

He also posted a meme showing Dr. Fauci telling US President Joe Biden: “Just another lockdown, my king (…)”, in an apparent criticism of this measure adopted in the past to fight Covid.

This tweet quickly went viral, receiving over 800,000 likes in about 11 hours, but it also sparked criticism.

Vaccine specialist and author Peter Hotez urged Mr Musk to delete the tweet. “200,000 Americans needlessly lost their lives to Covid, to this type of anti-science rhetoric and misinformation,” he said.

Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar praised how Dr. Fauci “calmly guided our country through the crisis” and maintained Elon Musk: “Could you just leave this man alone in your seemingly endless quest for attention?”

Republican lawmakers have threatened to go after Fauci when they take control of the House of Representatives in January, after several spats with him over Covid vaccines, mandatory mask wearing and other measures related to the pandemic.

First adviser to Republican President Donald Trump before Democrat Joe Biden, Dr. Fauci, who had always been careful to stay out of politics, found himself embroiled in countless controversies. In 2020, during White House press conferences, he politely corrected President Trump several times.

The 81-year-old immunologist is to step down as the president’s adviser on the pandemic this month. He is also leaving his position as director of the National Institute of Infectious Diseases (NIAID), which he held for 38 years, before the end of the year.

In November, he said the worst difficulty he had faced in the fight against Covid was the country’s political polarization.

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