President Donald Trump is asking why "nobody likes me," amid a "very high approval rating" for Dr. Anthony Fauci. During the White House coronavirus briefing on Tuesday, Trump was asked about the claims that Fauci had misled the public with his opinion on the use of hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for COVID-19. The president replied, saying he and Fauci have a "very good relationship" and that he likes that the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has "a very good approval rating."
"Because remember, he's working for this administration. We could have gotten other people. We could have gotten somebody else. It didn’t have to be Dr. Fauci," he said. The U.S. president then expressed support for Fauci's high favorability, while lamenting how he feels he is not quite as popular among Americans currently. "He's got this high approval rating. So why don't I have a high approval rating with respect, and the administration with respect to the virus? So it sort of is curious a man works for us with us very closely, Dr. Fauci, and Dr. Birx also highly thought of, and yet they’re highly thought of but nobody likes me. It can only be my personality."
Recently, Trump shared a tweet that stated Fauci has "misled the American public on many issues." Fauci responded to the claims on Good Morning America, telling George Stephanopoulos: "I have not been misleading the American public under any circumstances. [...] I don't tweet. I don't even read them so I don't really want to go there. I just will continue to do my job no matter what comes out because I think it's very important."
Fauci continued: "I'm just going to certainly continue doing my job. We're in the middle of a crisis with regard to an epidemic, a pandemic, this is what I do, this is what I’ve been trained for my entire professional life, and I’ll continue to do it." Earlier in July, it was unclear if Fauci will resume being a part of the White House coronavirus briefings. Trump has also not clarified this.