Nov 15, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Fauci says transition delay harmful to public health as COVID-19 cases surge

NIAID director Anthony Fauci said on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday that President Trump's refusal to cooperate with President-elect Joe Biden's transition team hurts public health as coronavirus cases surge across the country.

The state of play: As Trump refuses to concede the election to Biden, General Services Administration administrator Emily Murphy has not signed documents declaring Biden the apparent winner, preventing the president-elect's agency review teams from having access to information they need in order to get to work.

What he's saying: Fauci, who has served for 36 years under six presidents, said the transition process is "like passing a baton in a race." 

  • "You don't want to stop and then give it to somebody. You want to just essentially keep going, and that's what transition is. So it certainly would make things more smoothly if we could do that." 
  • Asked if he would like to start working with Biden's team from a public health perspective, Fauci responded, "Of course, that's obvious. Of course it would be better if we could start working with them."
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