Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.) sent a letter to Dr. Anthony Fauci and the National Institutes of Health demanding answers to reports that taxpayer money from his department was used to subject dogs to abusive testing.
"Yesterday, I sent a letter to Dr. Fauci regarding cruel, taxpayer-funded experiments on puppies; debarking before drugging and killing them," the South Carolina Republican tweeted Saturday along with a copy of the letter. "Thankful to my 23 democrat and republican colleagues who signed on. This is disgusting. What say you @NIH."
A report from the White Coat Waste Project that was based off a Freedom of Information Act request with the National Institutes of Allergy & Infectious Disease found that more than $400,000 in taxpayer money was spent on canine experiments during which beagles were infected with parasites via biting flies.
The Project reported that Dr. Anthony Fauci's bureaucracy's budget in 2021 is an estimated $6 billion, and that documents obtained through FOIA show evidence of a study in which otherwise healthy beagles were treated with an experimental medication before being introduced to biting flies that were carrying a parasite known to be contagious to humans.
"A new report shows that under Fauci's direction, the [NIAID] funded painful and deadly experiments on dogs," Fox News’ Ben Domenech reported in August, adding that records obtained by White Coat Waste show the dogs "endured months of pain, and once researchers were done with them, they were killed."
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which houses the NIH, issued the following statement:
"All animals used in NIH-funded research are protected by laws, regulations, and policies to ensure the smallest possible number of subjects and the greatest commitment to their welfare . . .
"The images of beagles were drawn from a manuscript published in July 2021 in the journal PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. The manuscript mistakenly cited support from NIAID, when in fact NIAID did not support this specific research shown in the images of the beagles being circulated . . . The research described by the White Coat Waste Project at the University of Georgia focuses on lymphatic filariasis (LF), a mosquito-transmitted parasitic disease that affects millions of people in many countries around the world.
"There also are concerns raised about work involving beagles under an NIAID contract for preclinical pharmacology and toxicology services. Under this contract, the contractor conducts testing as required in animal models by the FDA, in compliance with Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) guidelines and in a facility accredited by the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC) or its equivalent. Vocal cordectomies, conducted humanely under anesthesia, may be used in research facilities where numerous dogs are present. This is to reduce noise, which is not only stressful to the animals but can also reach decibel levels that exceed OSHA allowable limits for people and can lead to hearing loss."
In a statement to Fox News, Rep. Mace said that "using taxpayer money to de-bark, drug and kill beagle puppies is both inhumane and a disgrace to this country."
"The $1.68 million of taxpayer funds to force-feed and/or inject dozens of beagle puppies with experimental drugs is unnecessarily brutal and gruesome. Dr. Fauci and the rest of the NIH leadership should come forward and explain what the hell is truly going on," Mace added.
The controversial treatment of man’s best friend has resulted in widespread criticism on social media including from podcast star Joe Rogan.
The letter from Mace comes days after Fauci found himself in hot water for repeated claims that taxpayer dollars were not spent on gain of function research in a Wuhan, China lab which was seemingly contradicted by an NIH official.
In a letter to Rep. James Comer, ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, an NIH official admits that a "limited experiment" was conducted in order to test if "spike proteins from naturally occurring bat coronaviruses circulating in China were capable of binding to the human ACE2 receptor in a mouse model."
The letter states that the laboratory mice infected with the modified bat virus "became sicker" than mice that were given the unmodified bat virus.
Fox News’ Charles Creitz contributed to this report