Fauci and other government vaccine regulators like the NIH have been stonewalling Congress on how much they received in royalty payments from Big Pharma.
Information revealed through FOIA requests found $350 million in royalty payments had been paid to NIH employees over the last decade.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) sparred with NIAID Director Anthony Fauci once again during a contentious congressional hearing on Wednesday, warning that he will be forced to divulge his royalties from pharmaceutical interests during the COVID pandemic.
During a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing examining the government’s response to the monkeypox outbreak, Paul excoriated Fauci for refusing to divulge whether he and others leading the federal COVID response received kickbacks from Big Pharma amid the COVID vaccine rollout.
“We’ve been asking you, and you’ve refused to answer, whether the vaccine committees get royalties from the pharmaceutical companies,” Paul told Fauci. “I asked you last time, and what was your response? ‘We don’t have to tell you.’ We’ve demanded them through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), and what have you said? ‘We are not going to tell you.’”
“But I’ll tell you this, when we get in charge, we’re gonna change the rules and you will have to divulge where you get your royalties from, from what companies and if anybody on the committee has a conflict of interest, we are going to learn about it. I promise you that,” Paul added.
Fauci, clearly irritated, responded by claiming the FDA and CDC advisory committees – not him – are charged with vaccine approval procedures.
“They’re not my committees,” Fauci said. “They’re the VRBPAC [Vaccine and Related Biological Products Advisory Committees] for the FDA and the ACIP [Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices] for the CDC. So I don’t have any idea what goes on…”
Paul tried to reiterate his point but Sen. Bob Casey (D-Penn.), the chairman for the Subcommittee on Children and Families, shut down Paul’s line of questioning.
Paul had previously grilled Fauci over royalty payments in a June hearing after information revealed through FOIA requests showed Fauci and other government vaccine regulators like National Institute of Health Director Francis Collins received over $350 million in secretive royalty payments from drug companies over the last decade.
“First of all, according to the regulations, people who receive royalties are not required to divulge them, even on their financial statement, according to the Bayh-Dole act,” Fauci had told Paul.
The nonprofit organization Open The Books concluded that between 2010 to 2016, 27,000 royalty payments were paid to 1800 NIH employees totaling $350 million.
“Because those payments enrich the agency and its scientists, each and every royalty payment could be a potential conflict of interest and needs disclosure,” Open The Books co-founder and CEO Adam Andrzejewski wrote.
“NIH is a revolving door of tens of billions of dollars in government grant-making coupled with hundreds of millions of dollars in private – non-transparent – royalty payments.”
Watch the full exchange:
Watch the full Senate hearing: