Fauci
© Stefani Reynolds/Reuters
Dr. Anthony Fauci
House Republicans have written letters to the Democratic chairmen of two committees to compel Dr. Anthony Fauci to testify and reveal the unredacted versions of his emails that were released this week — and stirred up the controversy surrounding the theory that the coronavirus leaked from a Chinese lab, according to a report Thursday.

Reps. Steve Scalise (R-La.) and James Comer (R-Ky.) wrote to the chairs of the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus and the House Oversight Committee to say it is "imperative" that Fauci appear before the lawmakers, Fox News reported.

In their letter, Scalise and Comer said the thousands of pages of Fauci's emails released this week by BuzzFeed News via a Freedom of Information Act request "debunk many Democrats' claims from the past year," including that Fauci and other scientists were "muzzled" by the Trump administration. The two wrote:
"More importantly, the emails contain new evidence regarding the origins of COVID-19, including the possibility it leaked from a U.S. taxpayer funded laboratory. It is now imperative that Dr. Fauci come before our Committees to provide information related to the origins of the novel coronavirus as well as the U.S. government's role in funding research that may have contributed to the development of the novel coronavirus.

"The American people have a right to know what our government knew about the origins of the pandemic and when it was known."
In the letter, they also demanded "unredacted versions of all of Dr. Fauci's recently released emails."

"Your continued inaction while facing mounting evidence of the CCP's malicious conduct is concerning," they wrote​, referring to the Chinese Community Party​.​

Republican lawmakers have seized on the trove of released emails ​to blame Fauci for ignoring that the coronavirus may have been "engineered" or dismissing that it may have originated because of a leak in the Wuhan Institute of Technology and that US money was funneled to the lab. ​

President Biden last week ordered US intelligence agencies to ​review whether the deadly virus originated in the lab after an early assessment was inconclusive.

Fauci, in an interview Thursday with CNN, said he was keeping an open mind on whether the coronavirus escaped from the Wuhan lab, but said he believes that it's "far-fetched" that China deliberately leaked COVID.

The remarks came when he was asked about the information that was redacted in an email exchange he had with Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, on April 16, 2020. Fauci quipped:
"They only took about 10,000 emails from me, of course I remember. I remember all 10,000 of them. Give me a break. I don't remember what's in that redacted, but the idea, I think, is quite far-fetched that the Chinese deliberately engineered something so that they could kill themselves as well as other people. I think that's a bit far out, John."