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Biden Doesn't Want This Familiar Face Going Anywhere

Newser — Evann Gastaldo

President-elect Joe Biden doesn't want Dr. Anthony Fauci going anywhere. Biden told CNN Thursday, in his first joint interview with Kamala Harris since being elected, that he's asked the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases director "to stay on in the exact same role he's had for the past several presidents, and I asked him to be a chief medical adviser for me as well, and be part of the COVID team." Ron Klain, chosen by Biden as his chief of staff, knows Fauci well and talks to him often, Biden added.

Fauci has previously told the network he and Klain worked "very closely" together during the Ebola epidemic, when Klain was in Barack Obama's administration. Fauci said Thursday that he had met earlier in the day to discuss the pandemic with Biden's choice for coronavirus czar and two co-chairs of his 12-member coronavirus advisory board.

Separately on Thursday, Fauci apologized for appearing to criticize the UK's quick approval of a coronavirus vaccine. "I have a great deal of confidence in what the UK does both scientifically and from a regulator standpoint," he told the BBC.

He said that while the US approval process takes longer, he meant "no judgment on the way the UK did it" and "did not mean to imply any sloppiness even though it came out that way." The UK had pushed back on his comments, saying the vaccine would never have been approved were it not safe and effective.

In somewhat lighter news, Fauci also revealed, per the Hill, that he doesn't socialize (at all—he doesn't even do socially distant visits with friends and family) and that he, his wife, and the federal agents protecting them have "sort of become like a new family unit." (Also Thursday, Biden revealed his plan on masks.)

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