Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country's top infectious disease expert, has refuted suggestions that a recent surge of migrants in the United States is a driving factor of COVID rates in the nation.

Fauci said that it is not driven by immigrants during a CNN interview, according to a Business Insider report.

The CNN host Dana Bash had asked the infectious disease specialist regarding the recent poll that found 55 percent of Republicans and 40 percent of unvaccinated U.S. adults cited immigrants and tourists as a major reason for the uptick in COVID rates.

Fauci answered and said that if people would look at the data and the people who have been infected and hospitalized, they would see that it is not driven by migrants

The head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said that COVID transmission was a problem in the same way that it was a problem in other countries around the world.

Fauci noted that immigrants can get infected but they're not the driving force, adding "let's face reality here."

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Migrants and COVID Rates

A recent poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation revealed that a majority of Republicans attribute the rise of COVID rates to immigrants and tourist coming from other countries into the U.S., according to The Hill report.

The same poll had found that Democrats are more likely to see individuals refusing a COVID vaccine and not taking enough precautions as responsible for the current increase in cases.

Republicans have repeatedly pinned the blame on migrants for the COVID rate surge despite not imposing mask mandates and having lower vaccination rates, such as the case with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

The two governors had pointed to the southern border to justify the recent uptick of COVID cases in their states, according to a Forbes report.

Abbott had released an executive order in July that restricted the ground transportation of migrants into Texas due to perceived COVID risk.

DeSantis had also blamed U.S. President Joe Biden for having a wide-open southern border that could bring COVID.

Fauci had followed other medical experts who have also criticized those arguments, saying that Republicans are "scapegoating" by putting the blame on immigrants instead of implementing COVID mitigation measures like mask mandates.

Dr. Iván Meléndez, the local health authority in Hidalgo County, Texas, said in August during a press conference that it's a pandemic of the unvaccinated and not of the immigrants.

Title 42

The Trump administration has issued an interpretation of Title 42 to impose a public health order during the pandemic to quickly expel migrants at the border over concerns of the spread of the virus, according to an ABC News Go report.

Harold Koh, a legal adviser to the U.S. State Department, has resigned from his post and shared thoughts on the Trump-era Title 42.

Koh said that he believes this administration's current imposition of the Title 42 order continues to violate their legal obligation not to expel or return individuals who fear persecution, death, or torture, The Week reported.

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Written by: Mary Webber

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