Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Florida) took it to Twitter to rant on Sunday and accused Dr. Anthony Fauci of lying about coronavirus in general, particularly about masks.

“Dr. Fauci lied about masks in March,” Rubio tweeted Sunday morning. “Dr. Fauci has been distorting the level of vaccination needed for herd immunity. It isn’t just him. Many in elite bubbles believe the American public doesn’t know ‘what’s good for them’ so they need to be tricked into ‘doing the right thing.’ ”

Dr. Fauci is regarded as the nation’s top infectious disease specialist. Since the virus emerged, health experts took a long time to realize how airborne the virus was. As a result, protocols for wearing masks changed along with the new understanding about the disease.

Over the past few months, Fauci’s estimates have jumped around and, on Sunday, he spoke to CNN’s Dana Bash and explained why. He said that his numbers were “guestimates” based on extrapolations from what we know concretely about measles.


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Basing his numbers on the 98% effectiveness of measles vaccine – a disease that’s much more transmissible than COVID, despite the new strain of coronavirus – and the 94% effective rate of the Sars-CoV-2 vaccine, “75% to 80% for herd immunity for COVID-19 is a reasonable estimate,” he said. “And in fact, most of my epidemiology colleagues agree with me.”

Rubio got flamed by Twitter users posting photos of him getting vaccinated ahead of healthcare workers, as he was wearing a mask.

Perhaps the most stinging rebuke came from Rebekah Jones, the Florida civil servant who was fired in Ma for refusing to alter coronavirus data to downplay the pandemic’s effects and reach.

“I actually defended your early vaccination as a win for public health messaging,” Jones tweeted. “Attacking scientists for not knowing everything there is to know about a novel virus is absurd. And it was the governor of the state you lived in who intentionally mislead the public re: masks.”

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