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Republican tries to get doctor to downplay coronavirus threat — and it backfires spectacularly

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Dr. Anthony Fauci (Screen cap).

One Republican lawmaker’s attempt to downplay the threat posed by coronavirus blew up in his face on Thursday when a top government expert on infectious diseases told him that the threat is very real.

During a House Oversight Committee hearing on the virus, Rep. Michael Cloud (R-TX) tried to get Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, to say that the media was overhyping the dangers posed by the coronavirus.

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“I’d like to spend some time trying to clear the record… as we try to find the proper balance between creating a positive, proactive response to real threats, as opposed to instigating overreaction,” he said, and then asked him to compare how the coronavirus compared to other past infectious disease outbreaks such as SARS and H1N1.

Fauci responded by saying that people should take the virus very seriously and that it should not be confused with the seasonal flu.

“The seasonal flu has a mortality of 0.1 percent,” he said. “The state mortality, overall, of this… is about three percent.”

He then added some caveats about the mortality rate data but said the bottom line was coronavirus was at least “ten times more lethal than the seasonal flu.”

“But less lethal than N1H1 (sic)?” Cloud asked.

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“The 2009 pandemic of H1N1 was even less lethal than the regular seasonal flu,” Fauci said.

Watch the video below.


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Georgia Republicans slammed for only caring about Trump’s voter fraud lies when it threatens to harm them

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Republicans are growing increasingly worried that conspiracy theories about mass election fraud may depress voter turnout and could cost them in the upcoming Georgia runoffs, and according to the Washington Post's Greg Sargent, there's a "vile aspect" to this development that's no laughing matter.

"Georgia Republicans don’t mind when Trump lies about the integrity of their elections in a way that they think will help them," he writes. "They only mind when Trump lies about the integrity of their elections in a way that threatens to harm them."

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More Republican Senators seem open to another huge stimulus — despite McConnell’s resistance

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While COVID-19 vaccines are on their way, the impact of the pandemic has worsened in the United States due to large gatherings, holiday travel and the ongoing resistance of some to wear a mask. Eviction rates are climbing, contributing to more COVID cases, bankruptcies are up too, and small businesses are struggling to stay afloat or closing their doors forever.

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Trump’s legal challenge faces another setback in Wisconsin

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President Donald Trump's legal challenges suffered yet another loss in his long-shot bid to overturn his election defeat.

Wisconsin's Supreme Court denied a petition by his lawyers to challenge the president's loss there, bringing their record in such cases to one win and 41 losses, reported the Associated Press.

The lawsuit, filed Tuesday morning against the state's Democratic Gov. Tony Evers and various county election officials, asked to exclude 221,000 ballots fro the results over alleged instances of fraud and illegal conduct.

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