WASHINGTON — Six Republican senators voted against an amendment Tuesday that would eliminate the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) position, which is held by Dr. Anthony Fauci.
Senators voted on Kentucky Republican Rand Paul’s amendment to replace the NIAID with three separate national research institutes on Tuesday morning in Washington, D.C.
Republican Senators Richard Burr of North Carolina, Susan Collins of Maine, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Mitt Romney of Utah, and Jerry Moran of Kansas each voted against the amendment.
The senators did not immediately respond to The Daily Wire’s requests for comment.
“We’ve learned a lot over the past two years, but one lesson in particular is that no one person should be deemed ‘dictator-in-chief,’” said Paul when he introduced the amendment Monday, adding, “No one person should have unilateral authority to make decisions for millions of Americans.”
“This will create accountability and oversight into a taxpayer funded position that has largely abused its power, and has been responsible for many failures and misinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic,” the senator continued.
Paul and Fauci have repeatedly sparred in Senate hearings over Fauci’s insistence on restricting the American public throughout the coronavirus pandemic, and the Kentucky Republican has called many times for Fauci to be ousted from his position.
When Fauci suggested on “CBS This Morning” that Republicans — and former President Donald Trump — have a “misplaced perception about people’s individual right to make a decision that supersedes the societal safety,” Paul said that his comments showed a “casual disregard for what this country was founded upon.”
“He just wants you to listen to his authority,” Paul told The Daily Signal at the time. “He has the authority. He wants people to listen and not question him, but that’s sort of a recipe for authoritarianism, so I greatly object to him.”
Paul has also promised to launch an investigation into Fauci’s conduct should Republicans take back Congress.
“I’ll lead at least one committee, and we will use subpoena power to bring him in,” he said in November. “We’ll use subpoena power to bring in his documents and we will get to the bottom of this. We will get to the bottom of where the virus started. We will subpoena all the information.”
“Dr. Fauci, the idea that a government official like yourself would claim unilaterally to represent science and that any criticism of you would be considered a criticism of science itself is quite dangerous,” Paul told Fauci in January, before accusing Fauci of “ruling by mandate.”
The Senate passed a resolution, led by Paul, to repeal the mask mandate for public transportation on Tuesday.
While Democrats voted in favor of Paul’s resolution, according to The Daily Caller, Romney was the only Republican to vote against it.
Paul had also promised last week to force a vote in mid-March ending “unscientific” mask mandates on planes and public transportation.
“Apparently government doesn’t want to relinquish its power and plans to extend the mask mandate on planes & public transportation,” tweeted the Republican senator. “Not on my watch! I’ll be forcing a vote next week to end this unscientific mandate.”