Anthony Fauci to testify before Congress about pandemic mandates, COVID-19 origins

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WASHINGTON — Dr. Anthony Fauci, former chief White House medical advisor, will testify before Congress early next year on the origins of COVID-19 and other preventative steps officials took in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

Fauci’s testimony comes as the House’s Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus continues to investigate the pandemic. Rep. Brad Wenstrup, R-Ohio, announced Fauci's appearance on Tuesday.

“It is time for Dr. Fauci to confront the facts and address the numerous controversies that have arisen during and after the pandemic," Wenstrup, the GOP committee chair, said in a statement.

“Thankfully, retirement from public service does not shield one from Congressional oversight nor accountability to the American people. During Dr. Fauci’s upcoming testimonies, honesty is non-negotiable," he added.

Fauci's testimony is expected to turn heated. The former official has been at the center of Republican lawmakers' criticism of the federal and state responses to the pandemic.

Fauci stepped down from his role as the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases last year.

The committee first requested a sit-down interview with Fauci in February, but Fauci's attorneys made the arrangements over the interview's timing and details this month, according to the Associated Press.

Fauci's testimony will come as Republicans on the House Oversight subcommittee have alleged that the virus may have been developed as a bioweapon in China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology. However, officials in 2021 said analysts do not believe the spread of the virus was designed as a bioweapon. Many scientists believe the virus emerged from nature and spread from animals to humans.

Contributing: Associated Press

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Anthony Fauci to testify before Congress on COVID origins, pandemic