Appearing Monday on CNN’s Cuomo Prime Time, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said he spoke daily with primetime host Christopher Cuomo during his coronavirus illness because he was worried about his condition.
A partial transcript is as follows:
CHRISTOPHER CUOMO: How do I know what Tony Fauci thinks? I’ve known him a lot of my life, but I’ve never known him the way I know you through this pandemic. I have spoken to you, almost without exception, every day. You have been calling me out of personal concern to make sure that I was okay, my wife was okay, my son was okay. 11 o’clock at night. Later. Waiting for my show to end, Saturday, Sunday morning, the rare time you have with your family. Why?
DR. ANTHONY FAUCI: First of all, you’re a friend. We have a professional relationship, but you’re a friend. I’ve known you, I hate to say it, since you were almost a kid. And the fact is, you were going through some difficult times. I don’t think that people seeing you on this show were really experiencing or realizing how you were really sucking it up to look relatively normal. But when you finished the show, when we started chatting at 11 o’clock, 11:30 at night, you were wiped out. You not only had the acute difficulty of the virus that was replicating in you, but you had some of the secondary effects.
I cared about you, but I was worried about you. That’s the reason why I kept calling.
Cuomo announced he tested positive for the coronavirus on March 31 and said he planned to quarantine in his basement to prevent his wife and children from also contracting the illness. However, his wife, Cristina, and 14-year-old son, Mario, ended up getting sick anyway.
During Cuomo’s illness, a biker who identified himself as David, told the New York Post that he witnessed the CNN anchor violating quarantine on Easter Sunday by taking his family to inspect an undeveloped property in East Hampton. David alleges that when he confronted Cuomo about breaking quarantine, the newsman verbally attacked him. The biker, a lifelong Democrat who voted for the CNN host’s brother, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), said he was so shaken by the incident that he filed a report with the East Hampton police.
To top off Cuomo’s saga with coronavirus, CNN released reality TV-style footage of the host making a dramatic “official reentry from the basement” to greet with his family.