UPDATE: 2021 Fredo Gets SCHOOLED By 2020 Fredo on the Wuhan Lab Origin Theory

UPDATE: Chris Cuomo responded to NewsBusters’ reporting on Twitter and seemingly accusing the author of this piece of lying. More below.

As NewsBusters documented last night, CNN Prime Time host Chris “Fredo” Cuomo has been trying to play dumb with COVID by suggesting GOP focus on the Wuhan Institute of Virology last year was racist. And he was at it again Wednesday night, claiming theories about the lab were “a newer notion,” and that “the government had not been open to the lab theory.” But inconveniently for Fredo, NewsBusters’s archives had a video of him from April 2020 saying the Wuhan lab theory was “the story to watch.”

“The two. COVID was passed from animals to humans OR it originated from a lab accident. Now, the second is a newer notion,” he proclaimed on Wednesday. “The government had not been open to the lab theory. That is why it is so politically charged. It was dismissed as a conspiracy early on.”

And according to him, the only reason the right was interested in the Wuhan lab was to score political points:

So, why is it politically charged? Because Trumpers who were complicit in playing down the pandemic reality in America are now seeing more interest in the China lab theory as some kind of vindication. Enough to play “I told you so” with Fauci.

But back on April 15, 2020, Fredo came back from a commercial with “BREAKING NEWS” about how sources in the intelligence community were investigating the lab as the possible origin of the pandemic. NewsBusters had the video from the last time he flip-flopped in the lab theory in May 2020 (while battling the coronavirus from his basement):

All right. We have breaking news on our watch. It is a very provocative headline. I’m just getting it. Let’s go through it together in real-time. Here’s the headline. “The United States is pursuing the theory that the virus started in a Chinese lab, not a market.”

(…)

Here’s why. U.S. intel and national security officials say the United States government continues to investigate whether the coronavirus originated in a Chinese laboratory, not a wet market. This is according to multiple sources familiar with the matter. So, they are investigating. It’s not as strong as they believe that’s what happened. They’re investigating a theory. So it doesn’t take us close enough, but what does it do?

He even entertained the theory further by suggesting that “we don’t know a lot [COVID-19] because somebody changed a virus structure enough to make it a mystery for us.”

Does that sound like a “new notion” or that it was “dismissed as a conspiracy early on?”

Towards the end of Wednesday’s show, Cuomo was upstaged by CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta who reminded folks of an interview former CDC Director Robert Redfield had done with CNN months ago, where he explained why he felt COVID didn’t come from a bat.

“Normally, when a pathogen goes from a zoonote to human it takes a while for it to figure out how to become more and more efficient in human-to-human transmission. I just don’t think this makes biological sense,” Redfield told Gupta.

And Gupta seemed to agree, noting:

Basically, what he’s saying is at the jump, the point of the jump the virus sort of sputters along for a while. It’s got to figure out humans. This thing came screaming out of the gates at 90 miles an hour. And that’s why Redfield and a lot of others believe that’s because it was already being exposed to human cells in a lab.

Even Fredo’s anti-Republican rhetoric got dismantled. Jamie Metzl, a member of the World Health Organization, told Cuomo that we had to stop bickering like he was because “right now we can agree that there’s a big problem. And the biggest problem is China…”

Cuomo responded to NewsBusters’ reporting in the wee hours of Thursday morning by seemingly accusing the author of their piece of lying. “It is a newer notion for the government to accept. They thought early on it was a conspiracy theory, and my guest said that was wrong to do and wrong to disband the state dept effort to investigate. Why lie,” he wrote.

Adding: “Why is it not enough that we pursue a common question?”

Chris “Fredo” Cuomo’s clownish behavior was made possible because of lucrative sponsorships from Tractor Supply Co. and Uber. Their contact information is linked so you can tell them about the biased news they fund.

The transcripts are below, click “expand” to read:

CNN’s Cuomo PrimeTime
April 15, 2020
9:37:55 p.m. Eastern

CHRIS CUOMO: All right. We have breaking news on our watch. It is a very provocative headline. I’m just getting it. Let’s go through it together in real time. Here’s the headline. “The United States is pursuing the theory that the virus started in a Chinese lab, not a market.”

I know the internet is rife with conspiracy theories and concerns that this was something that was worked on, that was designed. And that’s why we don’t understand it. And, you know, as we had to learn from the White House backwards, COVID-19 isn’t the 19th version of anything. It was discovered in 2019. That’s what it means.

But beyond the coding of it, we know very little and part of the curiosity is, we don’t know a lot because somebody changed a virus structure enough to make it a mystery for us. Now, what is behind the headline, all right? I think we’re going to have to back off about a half a step.

Here’s why. U.S. intel and national security officials say the United States government continues to investigate whether the coronavirus originated in a Chinese laboratory, not a wet market. This is according to multiple sources familiar with the matter. So, they are investigating. It’s not as strong as they believe that’s what happened. They’re investigating a theory. So it doesn’t take us close enough, but what does it do?

Well, it starts to push holes in the idea of why was this lab in Wuhan? One theory is, well it’s in Wuhan because it’s a catchmen area, food comes from all over China into this area with these markets so it’s a logical place to be.

But if they’re investigating it and they can get sources, other sources told CNN that U.S. intel hasn’t been able to corroborate the theory but is trying to discern whether someone was infected in the lab or was about poor handling.

So, this is a story to watch. I know many are curious about it. New information. They are looking at it at the U.S. intel level. As we get more, you’ll get more.

(…)

CNN’s Cuomo Prime Time
May 26, 2021
9:01:04 p.m. Eastern

CHRIS CUOMO: The two. COVID was passed from animals to humans OR it originated from a lab accident. Now, the second is a newer notion. Okay? The government had not been open to the lab theory. That is why it is so politically charged. It was dismissed as a conspiracy early on. But now is under serious consideration. Why? An Intel report determined several researchers at the Wuhan Institute of Virology were hospitalized for an unknown illness in November of 2019, the month before China reported its first COVID case. Suspicious.

So, why is it politically charged? Because Trumpers who were complicit in playing down the pandemic reality in America are now seeing more interest in the China lab theory as some kind of vindication. Enough to play “I told you so” with Fauci.

(…)

9:05:01 p.m. Eastern

CUOMO: Right move for Biden to close down the Trump probe?

JAMIE METZL: No, obviously. And I listened to your intro, Chris. We need to — I’m a Democrat, I’m a progressive. As you said, I’ve been on this case from very early on. We’re going to get stuck in the he said/she said. Definitely both parties made mistakes. We can go back and have a lot of things maybe both parties aren’t proud of.

But right now we can agree that there’s a big problem. And the biggest problem is China, which has been engaged in a massive cover-up since day one involving destroying samples and hiding records, imprisoning people asking questions, a gag order on scientists.

And so, I think it’s okay for us as even Democrats, progressives, to say maybe the Republicans, maybe even Trump could have been right on one narrow thing. It’s important saying China has to be held accountable and we have to hold ourselves accountable.

So, it’s really important, a big step forward today. The Biden move to call for a full investigation by U.S. intelligence, I think that’s great and there’s a lot more work that also needs to be done.

(…)

9:53:36 p.m. Eastern

DR. SANJAY GUPTA: One of the big things that really caught my attention a few months ago when I was talking to Robert Redfield was just how quickly does a virus become contagious and what does that tell us about it. Listen to how he framed it to me, Chris.

ROBERT REDFIELD: I do not believe this somehow came from a bat to a human. [Transition] Normally, when a pathogen goes from a zoonote to human it takes a while for it to figure out how to become more and more efficient in human-to-human transmission. I just don’t think this makes biological sense.

GUPTA: Chris, I hope that makes sense. Basically, what he’s saying is at the jump, the point of the jump the virus sort of sputters along for a while. It’s got to figure out humans. This thing came screaming out of the gates at 90 miles an hour. And that’s why Redfield and a lot of others believe that’s because it was already being exposed to human cells in a lab.

(…)

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