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MORGAN GRIFFITH: Is Government Research Safe?

It has been roughly four and a half years since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, and I am determined that Congress needs to be fully informed on U.S. government funding of risky research projects, such as the research done at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV), in order to make sure the same mistakes don’t happen again.

During the 118th Congress, I’ve signed letters pressing the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for information and documents pertaining to risky research projects and biosecurity practices past and present, which would obviously include data concerning the origins of COVID-19.

As Chair of the Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight & Investigations, I held a hearing in 2023 to review biosafety and risk research.

Also, I have participated in closed-door transcribed interviews with Dr. Anthony Fauci of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), Dr. Francis Collins of NIH and EcoHealth Alliance President, Dr. Peter Daszak.

Daszak was a leading collaborative figure in applying for NIH grants, and was responsible for providing progress reports on EcoHealth’s research.

EcoHealth is the company that received grants from NIAID which in turn gave subgrants to WIV to conduct research on Coronavirus evolution and transmission.

At a November 2023 deposition, I asked Daszak about EcoHealth’s very late year-five progress report due to be filed in September of 2019. He said he “tried” to submit the progress report on time but could not get the NIH system to work.

Recall that evidence indicates the virus broke out in November or December of 2019 in China.

The missing report would not be submitted until August of 2021.

During Daszak’s November interview, after I asked him specific questions about the report and if there were any changes, he told me first there was no change, then no “significant” change between the September 2019 version he tried to submit and the August 2021 submission.

After the transcribed interview, a whistleblower gave us a draft of the progress report, dated May of 2020, where EcoHealth stated that bat coronavirus spillover was a rare event in South China and Southeast Asia.

However, in their August 2021 official submission of the year-five progress report, despite supposedly using the exact same data as the initial draft, EcoHealth stated that the viral transference of coronaviruses from bats to humans could affect as many as one million people in South China and Southeast Asia.

To me the difference between ‘very rare’ and a ‘million’ people is a significant difference.

But during the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic hearing on May 1, I asked Daszak why the change between May 2020 and August 2021. Did he have conversations with Fauci or his colleagues at NIAID? Was he pressured by outside sources? Or did they make the changes to hide potential EcoHealth liability?

He claimed the science changed! But that’s not what he told me in November of 2023. And I gave him several chances.

Daszak clearly did not tell the truth.

He lied to me and Congress in November! There must be some reason why.

A report from the Select Subcommittee recommends formal debarment of and a criminal investigation into EcoHealth and Daszak.

Unfortunately, I believe this is unlikely to happen under a Biden Department of Justice.

We should let a jury of American people decide if there is a substantial difference between a ‘very rare’ occurrence and as many as one ‘million’ people coming down with a virus.

But the guy who Fauci and NIAID entrusted with our taxpayer dollars claims there is no substantial difference.

Further, EcoHealth did not obtain required logbooks from WIV.

We will never be able to eliminate all doubt there was a lab leak at WIV because Wuhan didn’t submit crucial data to EcoHealth as required. Moreover, EcoHealth didn’t insist Wuhan provide them with the data as contractually required.

And can we even trust the data we actually got?

It comes down to whether you believe ‘very rare’ or a ‘million’ cases a year are substantially the same.

I don’t.

I do not trust information from WIV or EcoHealth.

Additionally, I find it incomprehensible that NIAID continues to fund EcoHealth research.

Not to alarm you, but the government is telling us right now that bird flu transference to humans is very rare.

Sound familiar?

And is NIAID doing risky research on other viruses like the animal poxes?

And if so, who are they collaborating with?

I will continue to dig into the facts and try to make government research projects safer.

– Congressman Morgan Griffith

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