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- This claim is unfounded.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, former longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, advised both Presidents Donald Trump and Joe Biden on the COVID-19 pandemic.
In all, he was an advisor to seven presidents — Republicans and Democrats — and their administrations on domestic and global health issues.
But is he "fake"? A recent Instagram post claims as much. And not just figuratively speaking.
"Dr. Fauci doesn’t exist!" an Oct. 31 Instagram post says. "Fauci was not on Larry King Live during the ‘AIDS’ epidemic."
This post was flagged as part of Meta’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)
First, we found two appearances Fauci made on CNN’s "Larry King Live" during the AIDS epidemic.
In August 1992, he was the guest on an episode titled "Latest Medical Dilemma — A New Strain of AIDS."
In December 1993, he was on an episode titled "AIDS — The Risks of ‘Casual Contact.’"
Second, claims that Fauci doesn’t exist are unfounded. Such a cover-up would require the complicity of seven presidential administrations, dozens of reporters who have interviewed him over the years, colleagues at the National Institutes of Health — of which the National Institute of Allergy Infectious Diseases is a part — and his high school basketball team. He was team captain in the 1950s.
Such a conspiracy would also stretch back decades, to before Fauci was a public figure and a pandemic-era bogeyman for some Americans.
We rate claims Fauci is a fictional person Pants on Fire!
PolitiFact news researcher Caryn Baird contributed to this report.
Instagram post, Oct. 31, 2023
Academy of Achievement, Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., visited Nov. 2, 2023
PBS, 10 photos exploring the many facets of Dr. Anthony Fauci, March 20, 2023
National Institute of Allergy Infectious Diseases, Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., Former NIAID Director, visited Nov. 2, 2023
CNN Larry King Live, Latest Medical Dilemma — A New Strain of AIDS, Aug. 6, 1992
CNN Larry King Live, AIDS — The Risks of ‘Casual Contact,’ Dec. 6, 1993
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