Originally published August 24, 2023 4:00 pm PDT
Representative Chip Roy (R-TX) and 14 other House Republicans are raising alarms over payments made to employees of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), including Dr. Anthony Fauci.
The payments reportedly come from various companies, some of which have gained substantially from the COVID-19 pandemic response and others that are linked to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
A recent press release disclosed that the representatives’ concerns follow an “Open The Books report” which highlighted that “NIH employees took $325 million in payments from 2,019 separate companies worldwide.”
Notably, the payments include “265 payments from Pfizer entities and 207 payments from Moderna.”
The lawmakers stressed in their letter, “These payments raise not only national security concerns but deepen concerns regarding the potential undue influence massive healthcare companies may have over public health agencies engaged in developing and regulating products and responding to public health threats — like COVID-19.”
Highlighting the potential conflict of interest, the representatives’ letter stated, “Of particular concern, companies that were intimately involved with — and stood to financially gain from — the federal government’s COVID-19 response, such as Moderna, Pfizer, BioNTech US, and Johnson & Johnson, provided a number of payments to NIH scientists.”
Dr. Anthony Fauci, who is “the highest-paid employee in the federal government,” was reportedly on the receiving end of “at least 37 third-party payments from companies,” while Dr. Collins received a minimum of “21 third-party payments.”
Furthermore, the letter from the representatives elucidates, “COVID-19 aside, the report raises general national security concerns regarding our public health apparatus’ financial ties to our geopolitical adversaries, including the CCP and companies based in Russia.”
The 14 co-signers supporting Representative Chip Roy’s demand for clarity include Representatives Lance Gooden (TX-5), Anna Paulina Luna (FL-13), Harriet Hageman (WY-AL), Ralph Norman (SC-5), Eli Crane (AZ-2), Mary Miller (IL-15), Debbie Lesko (AZ-8), Josh Brecheen (OK-2), Ben Cline (VA-6), Roger Williams (TX-25), Paul Gosar (AZ-9), Bob Good (VA-5), Daniel Webster (FL-11), and Andrew Clyde (GA-9).
The lawmakers are currently awaiting a detailed response from the acting director of NIH.
Read Rep. Roy’s letter below: