Rand Paul and Fauci Face Off over Recommending Boosters for Children


Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) sparred with quadruple vaccinated Dr. Anthony Fauci during a Senate hearing this week, grilling the White House medical adviser for pushing boosters on children despite a stunning lack of data to back it up.

“Dr. Fauci, the government recommends everybody take a booster over age five. Are you aware of any studies that show reduction in hospitalization or death for children who take a booster?” Paul asked Fauci during the committee hearing.

“Right now, there’s not enough data that has been accumulated, Senator Paul, to indicate that that’s the case. The — I believe that the recommendation that was made was based on the assumption that if you look at the morbidity and mortality of children within each of the age groups, you know 0 to 5, 5 to 11 —” Fauci, who recently tested positive for the virus despite receiving two booster shots, continued before Paul reemphasized the fact that there do not seem to be studies proving boosters to be effective for children.

“So there are no studies — and Americans should all know this —  there are no studies on children showing a reduction in hospitalization or death with taking a booster. The only studies that were permitted, the only studies that were presented, were antibody studies. So they say if we give you a booster, you make antibodies,” Paul said, noting that many scientists “would question whether or not that’s proof of efficacy of a vaccine.”

“If I give you ten or if I give a patient ten mRNA vaccines and they make protein each time, or they make antibody each time, is that proof that we should give ten boosters, Dr. Fauci?” Paul asked as Fauci attempted to dismiss the hypothetical as an “absurd exaggeration.”

UNITED STATES - JUNE 16: Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., questions Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, during the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing tilted An Update on the Ongoing Federal Response to COVID-19: Current Status and Future Planning, Dirksen Building, on Thursday, June 16, 2022. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Robert Califf, commissioner, Food and Drug Administration, and Dawn O'Connell

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) questions Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, at the COVID Federal Response Hearing on Thursday, June 16, 2022, in Washington, DC. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 16: (L-R) Anthony Fauci, MD, Director, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases,Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH, Director, United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Robert Califf, MD, Commissioner, United States Food and Drug Administration; and Dawn O'Connell, Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, United States Department of Health and Human Services attend the COVID Federal Response Hearing on Capitol Hill on June 16, 2022 in Washington, DC. Dr. Fauci was attending the hearing remotely due to testing positive for COVID-19. The hearing was held to examine and update the ongoing Federal response to COVID-19, focusing on current status and future planning. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Anthony Fauci, MD virtually attends the COVID Federal Response Hearing on Capitol Hill on June 16, 2022. Dr. Fauci was attending the hearing remotely due to testing positive for COVID-19. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

However, Paul made it clear that it is essentially “the proof” that Fauci’s committees used.

“That’s the only proof you have to tell children to take a boosters — that they make antibodies. So it’s not an absurdity. You’re already at like five boosters for people. You’ve had, you know, two or three boosters. It’s like, where is the proof?” Paul asked, noting the risk factors for the vaccine.

“So the risk of myocarditis with a second dose for adolescent boys 12-24 is about 80 in a million. This is both from the CDC and from the Israeli study,” he said, citing the results of another study as well with “remarkably similar” results.

“So there is risk and there are risk and you’re telling everybody in America just blindly go out there because we made antibodies. So it is not an absurd corollary to say if you have ten. In fact, you probably make antibodies if you get 100 boosters. Alright, that’s not science. That’s conjecture. And we should not be making public policy on it,” Paul emphasized as Fauci continued to ignore Paul’s main point.

“We just heard in his opening statement ranking member Burr talk about his staff who went to Israel, and if you look at the data from Israel, the boost, both the third shot boost and the fourth shot boost, was associated with a clear cut clinical effect mostly in elderly people. But also as they gathered more data, even in people in the 40s and the 50s, so there is clinical data,” Fauci said, prompting Paul to add, “But not in children.”

“See here’s the thing is you’re not willing to be honest with the American people,” Paul said, noting that 75 percent of children have already had the illness.

“Why is the CDC not including this in the data? You can ask the question. You can do laboratory tests to find out who’s had it and who hasn’t had the disease. What is the incidence of hospitalization and death for children who have been infected with COVID subsequently going to the hospital dying? What is the possibility if your kid has had COVID which is —  75 percent of the country’s had COVID — what is the chance that my child’s going to the hospital or dying?” Paul pressed as Fauci attempted to defend the recommendation.

“Senator, we also know from other studies that the optimal degree of protection when you get infection is to get vaccinated after infection and in fact showing reinfection in the era of an Omicron and the sub lineages –” he said as Paul interjected, reminding Fauci that he was unable to answer his question.

“You can’t answer the question I asked. The question I ask is how many kids are dying and how many kids are going to the hospital who have already had COVID?” he asked.

Arcadia, CA - January 08: Alden Lee, 6, gets first dose of Pfizer-BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine at Children's Hospital Arcadia Speciality Care Center on Saturday, Jan. 8, 2022 in Arcadia, CA. (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

A six-year-old receives his first dose of Pfizer-BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine at Children’s Hospital Arcadia Speciality Care Center on January 8, 2022 in Arcadia, California. (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

“The answer may be zero, but you’re not even giving us the data because you have so much wanted to protect everybody from all the data because we’re not smart enough to look at the data,” the Kentucky Republican continued.

“When you released data earlier, when the CDC released the data, they left out the category of 18 to 49 on whether or not there was a health benefit for adults 18-49. Why was it left out? When critics finally complained, it was finally included because there was no health benefit from taking a booster between the 18-49 in the CDC study,” he added.

According to the most recent data from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), in the 46 states reporting, as well as New York City, Puerto Rico, and Guam, “0.00%-0.02% of all child COVID-19 cases resulted in death,” and children were “0.00%-0.32% of all COVID-19 deaths, and 1 state reported zero child deaths.”

Further, in 25 states reporting, as well as New York City, “0.1%-1.5% of all their child COVID-19 cases resulted in hospitalization.”


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