Compromised Scientist Downplays Lab Leak Theory In Congressional Hearing On COVID-19 Origins

Compromised Scientist Downplays Lab Leak Theory In Congressional Hearing On COVID-19 Origins

Congress heard from a compromised witness in its most recent hearing on the origins of COVID-19 Wednesday morning.

Stanley Perlman, a professor of microbiology and immunology at the University of Iowa, was called to testify before the “Principles for Outbreak Investigation: COVID-19 and Future Infectious Diseases” hearing on the origins of COVID-19.

Perlman, who came under fire in 2014 for conducting dangerous research on respiratory viruses, recently signed a letter “express[ing] solidarity with our professional colleagues in China” and doubling down on the theory that “SARS-CoV-2 most likely originated in nature and not in a laboratory.”

“Unsubstantiated allegations were being raised about the source of the COVID-19 outbreak and the integrity of our peers who were diligently working to learn more about the newly recognised virus, SARS-CoV-2, while struggling to care for the many patients admitted to hospital with severe illness in Wuhan and elsewhere in China,” the letter from earlier this month stated.

Infamous EcoHealth Alliance head Dr. Peter Daszak, who received funding from the National Institutes of Health to work with the Wuhan lab and thanked Dr. Anthony Fauci for minimizing the lab leak theory in exchange for pushing a “natural origin” story, also signed the letter.

“The strongest clue from new, credible, and peer-reviewed evidence in the scientific literature is that the virus evolved in nature, while suggestions of a laboratory-leak source of the pandemic remain without scientifically validated evidence that directly supports it in peer-reviewed scientific journals,” the letter claims.

In addition to Perlman’s resistance to the lab leak theory which Democrats, corporate media, and Big Tech all banded together to downplay, he is a member of the Lancet COVID Commission Task Force researching the origins of COVID-19. The force was chaired by Daszak up until he was forced to recuse himself from the commission last month, shortly after he expanded his disclosure to include that he “joined the WHO-China joint global study on the animal origins of SARS-CoV-2 towards the end of 2020 and is currently a member.”

During the hearing, Perlman’s skepticism about the Wuhan lab leak shined through as he repeated the narrative that the virus came from an animal in nature.

Perlman called for “data transparency” and “international collaboration” but went on to tout the compromised World Health Organization and CDC as “natural candidates for working with these studies.” He concluded his opening statement by doubling down on the animal origins theory.

“It is evident from the COVID-19 pandemic that is necessary to obtain as many samples as possible at the early stage of the pandemic for a broad group of wild companion and farmed animals as well as from humans with unexplained respiratory or other diseases to have the best chance or perhaps the only chance of determining how the virus crosses species to infect humans,” Perlman said.

Perlman’s sentiments were echoed by other scientists asked to testify in the hearing.

“If there is an argument to be made about the possibility of a laboratory origin here, I think we have to consider first the possibility that there was unrecognized presence of this virus either in the laboratory through samples that were collected or an encounter by a laboratorian out in the field and that the infection, perhaps was asymptomatic or it’s simply not recognized,” Dr. David Relman, a professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine said. 

Despite Relman’s claims, he did acknowledge that the research occurring at the Wuhan Institute of Virology was “risky.”

Jordan Davidson is a staff writer at The Federalist. She graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism.
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