Sen. Joni Ernst takes on Eco Health Alliance — again

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By LINDA BOYLE

Readers may remember Rep. Dr. Rich McCormick, the Georgia Republican who served on the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic, when he stated “EcoHealth [Alliance] violated the terms of its NIH grant when it failed to produce laboratory notebooks with data about the WIV’s gain-of-function research.”  

And who was the person behind all that gain-of-function research?  That was Dr. Peter Daszak through National Institute of Health funding that was authorized by none other than Dr. Anthony Fauci, the former director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and one of the core creators of Covid-19 policies in the Trump and Biden Administrations.

Here were the key takeaways from the hearing with Dr. Fauci, according to the House Oversight Committee’s own summary:

  • Dr. Fauci showed no remorse for the millions of lives affected by his divisive rhetoric and his unscientific policies. He did not apologize to the thousands of Americans who lost their jobs because they refused the novel vaccine, nor did he apologize to children experiencing severe leaning loss as a result of actions he promoted.
  • Dr. Fauci confirmed that his Senior Advisor — Dr. David Morens — violated official NIH policies and potentially broke federal law. Evidence obtained by the Select Subcommittee suggests that Dr. Morens deliberately obstructed the Select Subcommittee’s investigation into the origins of COVID-19, unlawfully deleted federal COVID-19 records, and shared nonpublic information about National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant processes with his “best-friend” EcoHealth Alliance, Inc. (EcoHealth) President Dr. Peter Daszak.
  • Dr. Fauci maintained his misleading claim that the NIH never funded gain-of-function research in Wuhan, China. In 2021, he told Sen. Rand Paul that “the NIH has not ever and does not now fund gain-of-function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.” During yesterday’s hearing, Dr. Fauci doubled down on his previous claim by stating “the NIH did not fund gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.” Notably, former Acting NIH Director Dr. Lawrence Tabak told the Select Subcommittee recently that the NIH did, in fact, fund gain-of-function research in Wuhan.
  • Dr. Fauci agreed with the Select Subcommittee that EcoHealth and its president, Dr. Peter Daszak, should never again receive a single cent from the U.S. taxpayer. Two weeks after the Select Subcommittee released evidence of EcoHealth’s contempt for the American people, its flagrant disregard for the risks associated with gain-of-function research, and its willful violation of the terms of its NIH grant, the Department of Health and Human Services commenced formal debarment proceedings against the organization and its president.
  • Dr. Fauci corrected his previous testimony that his staff did not possess conflicts of interest. During his transcribed interview he claimed, “the only people that I am involved with is my own staff, who we’ve mentioned many times in this discussion, who don’t have a conflict of interest.” During yesterday’s hearing, he changed his tune testifying that Dr. Morens “definitely had a conflict of interest.”
  • Dr. Fauci publicly acknowledged that the lab leak hypothesis was possible and not a conspiracy theory. Yesterday, he told Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) that he falsely claimed that he has kept an “open mind” about the origins of the pandemic. This comes nearly four years after prompting the publication of the now infamous “Proximal Origin” paper that attempted to vilify and disprove the lab leak hypothesis.

Somebody in Congress was evidently listening when the testimony to the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic occurred.   

Sen. Joni Ernst, a Republican from Iowa, was listening. The Senate Armed Services Committee has unanimously passed her amendment to the 2025 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) “to close all potential pathways for EcoHealth Alliance to receive further federal defense funding.”  

Ernst added this to the National Defense Authorization Act after National Institutes of Health Principal Deputy Director Lawrence Tabak half-admitted that EcoHealth Alliance did indeed conduct gain-of-function research with our money, but it was “generic.”  

Dr. Bryce Nickels, a professor of genetics at Rutgers University and co-founder of the pandemic oversight group “Biosafety Now,” told the Washington Post, “Tabak was engaging in the usual obfuscation and semantic manipulation that is so frustrating and pointless.”

These experiments at Wuhan Virology Institute produced much more infectious variants than what could occur naturally if bats had transmitted the Covid-19 virus, some virologists say. 

The Senate Armed Services Committee unanimously passed Sen. Ernst’s amendment. That speaks volumes.  

While the Department of Health and Human Services in May suspended federal funding to EcoHealth Alliance and started debarment proceedings that would ban this group and Dr. Daszak from receiving funding for three years, Ernst’s amendment takes the ban a step further: If passed, it will not only ban EcoHealth Alliance but any subsidiary of the disgraced group from future defense funding.

“Defense dollars should be spent protecting our country, not paying for more of EcoHealth’s batty experiments,” Ernst told the Washington Free Beacon. “This shady organization has managed to avoid accountability time and time again. My amendment slams the door shut on any possibility for deep state bureaucrats to find another roundabout way to restore funding for the group’s risky research.”

If this Senate NDAA ban is successful, EcoHealth Alliance’s bottom line could be severely affected. EcoHealth Alliance heavily depends on federal funds, receiving more than $94 million in taxpayer dollars since 2008. This same group gave $600,000 of that funding to the Wuhan Institute of Virology for experiments on viruses that looked a lot like the ones that caused Covid-19. 

Before I get too excited and do a victory lap, I am aware of EcoHealth Alliance’s ability to weasel out of federal funding bans.  President Donald Trump suspended the group’s research funds in 2020. President Joe Biden reversed that funding ban in 2023, but suddenly banned them again in May. EcoHealth Alliance is working its K Street magic to get off the ‘banned” list. 

Senator Ernst tried a similar resolution in an 2024 version of the NDAA bill that made it through both the House and the Senate. But it didn’t make it into the final version—it was a last minute decision behind closed doors to remove it. 

It’s unknown if this 2025 amendment will meet the same demise. Yet I am hopeful.After Tabak testified, Congress and President Biden seem unified in their opposition.   

We are one step closer to solving the issues surrounding Covid and how it came to be a disease created that killed over 6 million people worldwide, including one million Americans. But there is much more work that needs to be done. There are bureaucrats who need to be held accountable for the harm done.  

And time will tell if America has the political will to hold all accountable for this horrible travesty.

Linda Boyle, RN, MSN, DM, was formerly the chief nurse for the 3rd Medical Group, JBER, and was the interim director of the Alaska VA. Most recently, she served as Director for Central Alabama VA Healthcare System. She is the director of the Alaska Covid Alliance.

20 COMMENTS

  1. All these points were known throughout the government at the time (and obvious to anyone in the public with a minimal flicker of light between their ears) and no one agency or individual came out in public. We live in a totalitarian governance system and there will be no consequences for agencies and individuals in these agencies or accounting to the public. The massive funding and legislative packages which are written by specific corporate “lobbyists”, NGOs and think tanks are routinely passed by the Uniparty Congress. Certain pet projects are kept in or deleted through trades and sales between the Democrat and Republican congressional party factions in their made for public show time “disagreements”. Simply openly expressing reality has become controversial and grounds for being censored, shadow banned or being deemed a non person. It’s awesome you publish these facts, but the chance of meaningful consequences or changing the national course is minimal.

  2. Why can’t Alaska be blessed with a lady as
    Intelligent and sharp as US Senator Joni Ernst?
    Why do we always have to settle for appointed, written-in, RCV Lisa Murkowski?

    • I was afraid that our Murkowski family dynasty would have died out in the early 2000’s, Rick.
      Without these manipulations, Nancy and I would have faded into obscurity two decades ago. Lisa might not be much, but she still carries the torch for the name Murkowski.

  3. I read the other day that Trump got his idea that the horse wormer paste as a cure actually came from Fox News reporter Laura Ingrams. He wanted there to be a miracle drug that would make it all go away. His desperation was clouding his judgment process. Easily manipulated.

  4. I will never believe anything the feds say or do.
    For me I will not get any
    Experimental vaccines or do anything who says they’ve lost my trust.

  5. I would like to See Dr Fauci’s net worth pre and post pandemic. This guy made huge money by propagating the scam.

  6. You have to admit that the engineered virus bought and paid for with US tax dollars accompanied by a group of Chinese engineers who would love to bring America to its knees before delivering their final blow was a very effective “tool” that destroyed the world economy and eliminated millions of “undesirables”.

    The proof the virus was engineered has all the markers of being man-made.
    Fauci will never admit to it.
    I would bet some waterboarding would change his mind.

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