Senators Demand Transparency on COVID-19 Origins
Sens. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) and Mike Braun (R-Ind.) are eagerly awaiting President Joe Biden’s response as the deadline approaches for the declassification of all documents related to the origins of COVID-19.
In March, Biden signed the COVID-19 Origin Act of 2023, which requires the Director of National Intelligence to declassify any information regarding the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) and its connection to the origins of COVID-19 within 90 days. This deadline is set to expire on Sunday, June 18.
Hawley and Braun have sent a letter to the White House, requesting an update on the declassification process with only four days remaining.
“Your Administration has not yet provided any indication of when the relevant material will be declassified,” the senators wrote.
The senators emphasized their commitment to transparency, highlighting that the COVID-19 Origin Act allows redactions only to protect intelligence sources and methods. The law specifically calls for the intelligence community to disclose if the WIV was conducting research for the Chinese regime’s People’s Liberation Army and if the virology lab was studying coronaviruses. It also requires the intelligence community to reveal the names of any WIV researchers who fell ill in the fall of 2019, their involvement in coronavirus experimentation, and the dates their symptoms began.
“Your Administration should comply with the law as written and not undermine clear congressional intent to provide as much transparency to the American people as possible,” Hawley and Braun urged. “The American people deserve to know how this pandemic began, and their democratically elected representatives have expressed their will unanimously. I urge you not to stand in their way.”
The COVID-19 Origin Act swiftly became law after Hawley introduced it in the Senate. It passed with unanimous consent in the Senate and received a 419-0 voice vote in the House of Representatives.
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