Former White House coronavirus response coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx implied that President Donald Trump may have been depending on inaccurate data about the virus in an interview on Sunday with CBS's "Face the Nation."
When CBS interviewer Margaret Brennan asked Birx if she thought that Trump "appreciated the gravity of the health crisis" that Brix was describing, Birx replied that "there was parallel data stream coming into the White House that were not transparently utilized."
"I saw the president presenting graphs that I never made," Birx added when Brennan asked her if she would define the parallel data streams as disinformation. "So I know that someone...was creating a parallel set of data and graphics that were shown to the president. I know what I sent up and I know that what was in his hands was different from that."
While Dr. Birx could not definitively identify who was providing these alternative data streams, she noted that neuroradiologist and fellow coronavirus task force member Dr. Scott Atlas was "certainly" bringing in parallel data streams.
Birx also told Brennan that she was not the only task force member trying to get accurate information out to the public. According to Birx, outgoing FDA commissioner Dr. Steve Hahn, CDC director Dr. Robert Redfield, and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases director and President Biden's current chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci, and herself formed a "coalition" who worked together to dispatch information. Personally, Birx aimed to avoid becoming "political."
Earlier this month, Fauci and US Surgeon General Jerome Adams disputed a claim by Trump that federal data on COVID-19 cases and deaths in the United States is overblown, and both expressed optimism that the pace of vaccinations is picking up.
"The deaths are real deaths," said Fauci on ABC News’ This Week, adding that jam-packed hospitals and stressed-out healthcare workers are "not fake. That’s real.”