(The Center Square)
Lawmakers are demanding President Joe Biden declassify documents related to the origins of COVID-19, particularly federal investigations into the matter.
The Senate unanimously passed a bill that would require Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines to declassify documents related to the origins of COVID. Republicans have a majority in the House, giving the legislation a chance, but it’s doubtful Biden will sign it.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was asked directly about the bill during a press briefing, but she did not respond, saying she “wouldn’t get ahead of the president. “.
“It shouldn’t take an act of Congress to force the administration to help uncover the truth about one of the most important public health issues of our time,” said Cathy Rodgers, R-Wash. and Investigations Chairman Morgan Griffith, R-VA., Health Subcommittee Chairman Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., and Energy, Climate, and Grid Safety Subcommittee Chairman Jeff Duncan, RS.C., said in a joint statement.
Related: FBI confirms COVID-19 likely came from Wuhan lab
The call for transparency comes after news broke that the White House and key lawmakers have received classified information indicating that the Department of Energy has concluded that COVID-19 likely originated from the virology lab of Wuhan. This news only fueled calls for more information.
“Biden officials are dragging their feet and haven’t done it,” the aforementioned Republican lawmakers said in a statement. ” This is unacceptable. The American people deserve full transparency about what our government knows about how this pandemic started, how taxpayer dollars may have been spent on risky research, and whether labs performing such research are up to standard. highest security. We will not stop our investigation until the truth is revealed.
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After the Energy Department briefing, first reported by The Wall Street Journal, the FBI also publicly confirmed the same findings.
“[FBI] Director Wray confirmed that the Bureau assessed that the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic likely stemmed from a laboratory incident in Wuhan, China,” the agency said in a statement.
House Republicans have also pledged to investigate whether US taxpayer dollars may have played a role since the lab received federal funding.
Related: Wuhan backlash erupts after Biden administration’s stunning admission
The renewed controversy over the origins of COVID comes after Republicans and some media outlets were mocked during the pandemic for claiming the virus could have originated from the Wuhan lab, like The Center Square before. reported.
In 2020, The Associated Press called the idea a “myth”. The same year, The New York Times called it a “conspiracy theory” and The Washington Post called it a “fringe theory.”
Social media companies like Facebook were removing posts in 2021 that claimed COVID-19 was man-made.
“For nearly three years, anyone who asked if COVID-19 originated in a lab leak epidemic was silenced and branded as a conspiracy theorist,” said U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo. “Now those cautious skeptics are right. The Biden administration must immediately declassify all intelligence reports regarding the origins of COVID-19 and the Wuhan Institute of Virology. The American people deserve to know the truth.
Syndicated with permission from The central square.