U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) played to the cameras Friday morning as he bullied, belittled, and attacked Dr. Anthony Fauci during a House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee hearing on the coronavirus crisis.
Jordan tried to politicize the immunologist and public health official's testimony – and tried to get Fauci, who has served for decades as the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), to say that the federal government should shut down the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests under the guise of combatting the pandemic.
"Do protests increase the spread of the virus?" Jordan pointedly asked.
Fauci repeated the question, offering to "make a general statement," but Jordan immediately interrupted him after the doctor had spoken just 15 words.
"Half a million protestors on June 6 alone," Jordan declared.
"Crowding particularly when you're not wearing a mask contributes to the spread of the virus," Fauci replied.
"Should we limit the protesting?" Jordan pressed.
Stunned, Fauci responded.
"I'm not sure – how do you mean? Should we limit the protesting?"
Jordan, insisting a public health official weigh in on a specific event and a specific legal issue, shot back with a terse and angry answer: "Should government limit the protesting?"
This is a question not for Fauci but for legal experts. Jordan could have asked the question another way, say, "Should the government limit outside events of more than 500 people?" But he didn't want an answer, he wanted the television footage.
The attack went on for at least two minutes. Ultimately Chairman James Clyburn was forced to intervene.
Jim Jordan is out here asking Dr. Fauci a series of gotcha questions about the possibility that #BlackLivesMatter p… https://t.co/ma5olvlKKf— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar)1596206489.0
Many on social media were furious – and only too happy to remind Americans that allegations by numerous of his former college wrestlers have never been resolved.
JIM JORDAN: Dr. Fauci, do you believe wrestlers should be molested. Hey who put this question in here. FAUCI: No. T… https://t.co/B9BnbatwHr— Untucked with Jeremy Newberger (@Untucked with Jeremy Newberger)1596206640.0
If only Gym Jordan cared as much about young boys being sexually assaulted on his watch as he does about people exe… https://t.co/3G0Uj7gJCj— Matt Rogers 🗳 (@Matt Rogers 🗳)1596209005.0
Some focused on the holes in Jordan's line of attack:
@atrupar He forgot to mention Trumps rallies no masks and pence's campaign rallies no mask or distancing Dr. Fachi… https://t.co/M2LKNLts5x— Justamom1 (@Justamom1)1596206847.0
@atrupar Maybe ask about Trump rallies that have actually killed a former presidential candidate?— Ziggy Stardust (@Ziggy Stardust)1596206583.0
@TheReal_LeviD @atrupar Why is it Fauci's role to say whether or not the government should forcibly stop civil righ… https://t.co/ROiFGLwo7M— Red 🎁 (@Red 🎁)1596206796.0
@MiaFarrow @Jim_Jordan And the Democrats are missing the critical point. This virus spreads more easily and more re… https://t.co/neXJMkjIW8— njevancik (@njevancik)1596206950.0
Some just shared their feelings about the extremely polarizing Congressman:
Wow. @Jim_Jordan is rude and stunningly lunkheaded . #coronavirusHearing— Mia Farrow (@Mia Farrow)1596206664.0
@atrupar 150K deaths, and this is where the energy is going right now instead of trying to make some kind of fix. Unbelievable.— Shaurya Chawla (@Shaurya Chawla)1596206782.0
@MiaFarrow @Jim_Jordan Gym Jordan is a loudmouthed bully who defends Trump no matter what. He's from a gerrymandere… https://t.co/8QKSCHKIac— Barbara Witsaman (@Barbara Witsaman)1596208546.0
Jim Jordan is not great at this https://t.co/1mUPhCBkfn— Molly Jong-Fast🏡 (@Molly Jong-Fast🏡)1596206596.0
I just hate seeing Jim Jordan be disrespectful to James Clyburn. I’ve never wrestled before. But I would wrestle Ji… https://t.co/TgmhgUpriR— Jason Overstreet 🩸🦷🗽 (@Jason Overstreet 🩸🦷🗽)1596207056.0
Jim Jordan is what’s wrong with America.— ReallyAmerican.com 🇺🇸 (@ReallyAmerican.com 🇺🇸)1596208245.0
Fauci basically told Jim Jordan to Fuck off— José (@José)1596206855.0