Republican lawmakers are livid at President Joe Biden and Dr. Anthony Fauci, accusing them of an attack on Christmas after Fauci noted that the pandemic might not be over by late December.
"The Biden Administration wants to cancel Christmas!" claimed Florida Sen. Rick Scott. "Americans are smart enough to make their own decisions. They don't want or need the federal government to decide how or when they spend time with their own families."
During a Sunday morning appearance on CBS News' Face the Nation, Fauci, the country's top epidemiologist, was asked by host Margaret Brennan whether it would be safe to hold family gatherings by Christmas. Fauci answered, "You know, Margaret, it's just too soon to tell.
We've just gotta [concentrate] on continuing to get those numbers down, and not try to jump ahead by weeks or months and say what we're gonna do at a particular time."
Fauci, who has served as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984, has been a key member of the coronavirus response teams for both Biden and former President Donald Trump.
With the Delta variant now dominant, the nation is still averaging more than 100,000 new reported cases daily. There is no evidence that the pandemic will be resolved in the next 11 weeks.
"Fauci has lost all credibility with the American people," tweeted House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik. "We aren't waiting on his permission to celebrate Christmas together."
"I would like to inform Biden and Fauci that regardless of what they say, Americans are celebrating Christmas," announced New York Rep. Claudia Tenney.
"Guess this means I'm throwing a giant Christmas party," said Texas Rep. Dan Crenshaw.
"No one elected Fauci to be Christmas Czar," mocked Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs.
"This Grinch can move right along, the Boebert household is celebrating Christmas no matter what he says," tweeted Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado. "And someone should let him know that tyrants only get coal in their stocking."
On Monday, Fauci told CNN that his urging Americans to get vaccinated "was misinterpreted as my saying we can't spend Christmas with our families, which was absolutely not the case. I will be spending Christmas with my family, I encourage people, particularly the vaccinated people who are protected, to have a good, normal Christmas with your family."
The attack on Fauci and Biden is the latest salvo in the GOP's claim that Democrats are waging a "war on Christmas."
In 2016, Donald Trump said during his campaign for president that he would make sure Americans said "Merry Christmas" again if elected — as if everyone had somehow stopped saying it. He declared mission accomplished on that promise in 2017.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.