Editor’s Note: This article has been updated.
President Biden’s team reportedly shut down a State Department investigation meant to prove the theory that the COVID-19 outbreak began in a Wuhan lab with links to the Chinese military.
The stunning revelation was equally stunning in its source, as CNN reported on the effort to shut down the probe.
The network writes that the effort to prove the theory was headed up by then-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo but was shut down “over concerns about the quality of its work.”
The Biden administration has denied that the investigation was “shut down.”
The Daily Mail reports: “The revelations will lead to uncomfortable allegations for Biden that his team politicized the public health effort, and harmed the nation by shutting down a useful inquiry begun by his predecessor.”
That uncomfortable news comes amidst renewed interest in the source of the pandemic, with some speculating the COVID release did not occur naturally but rather, as CNN states, “that mistakes or an accident in a Chinese lab” caused the outbreak.
RELATED: House Intel Republicans Say ‘Significant Circumstantial Evidence’ Shows COVID Leaking From Wuhan Lab
Last week, Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee said there is “significant circumstantial evidence” that the COVID-19 outbreak emanated from a Wuhan Institute of Virology leak.
Such reports in the past have been labeled as “debunked” or a “conspiracy theory” in the past by fact-checkers.
But a new U.S. intelligence report found that several researchers at China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology became ill in November 2019.
Their symptoms were such that they had to be hospitalized.
It remains unclear if the researchers contracted COVID-19 and the lab strongly denied the report.
House Intel Republicans though, insist the questions being raised mean the Biden administration must “place more pressure on China to allow full, credible investigations of the source of the COVID-19 pandemic and … the likelihood that it resulted from a lab leak.”
The Washington Examiner reports that the Biden State Department has strongly denied that the investigation was shut down.
“There has been incorrect reporting that the Biden-Harris Administration shut down an investigation by the State Department’s Bureau of Arms Control and Verification and Compliance into the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic. That reporting is incorrect,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told the Washington Examiner. “In February and March of 2021, the team’s findings were briefed to AVC and Policy Planning policy staff in the new administration. With the report delivered, the work was ended. The contract continues, focused on other, arms control related work related to AVC’s portfolio.”
RELATED: Rand Paul Accuses Fauci Of COVID Cover-Up, U.S. Funding At Wuhan Virus Lab
Former President Donald Trump seized on these new reports to note that he was pilloried by the media and fact-checkers for suggesting the COVID-19 outbreak generated from a Wuhan lab, something he said was “obvious.”
“Now everybody is agreeing that I was right when I very early on called Wuhan as the source of COVID-19, sometimes referred to as the China Virus,” he said in a statement.
“To me it was obvious from the beginning but I was badly criticized, as usual. Now they are all saying, ‘He was right,’ Trump lamented.
They aren’t quite saying Trump was right, but they’re at least reporting information that suggests he could have been.
“The idea that the virus came from a Chinese lab is gaining mainstream support, with leading scientists who previously expressed skepticism – such as Anthony Fauci – now saying it is plausible,” the Daily Mail writes.
Earlier this month, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) accused Fauci and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) of having funded the Wuhan lab.
Fauci admitted that the NIH did fund a project at the Wuhan lab, but denied it was for “gain of function” research – a tactic that deliberately mutates microorganisms to increase their potency.
An amendment by Rand Paul passed in the Senate on Tuesday bans the use of U.S. taxpayer dollars to fund gain-of-function research in China.
“We may never know whether the pandemic arose from the lab in Wuhan, but we do know that so far no intermediate animal host has been discovered,” Paul said before the amendment passed, a reference to the previously-held theory that COVID-19 came from bats in Chinese wet markets.
Fauci, over the weekend, admitted he is no longer certain the outbreak “developed naturally.”
“I’m not convinced about that,” he said in an interview with Politifact editor Katie Sanders, who inquired as to Fauci’s confidence that COVID-19 was a natural phenomenon.
“I think that we should continue to investigate what went on in China until we find out to the best of our ability exactly what happened,” he added.
Trump, in an interview with Newsmax Tuesday night, said the Biden administration needs “to be stronger than what we are right now” on China.
Shutting down an investigation into whether a Wuhan lab may be the source of a pandemic that shattered lives across the globe was certainly not a step in the right direction.
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