MASON CITY, Iowa - The Biden administration is digging deeper into the origins of COVID-19 after the Wall Street Journal reported three researchers from a lab in Wuhan, China became sick with the virus in November 2019.
This week, a report prepared by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California that began under the Trump administration concluded that the hypothesis that the virus' origin came from the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV). U.S. Senator Joni Ernst has long sounded the alarm on the lab, saying they have a history of deception regarding causes of deadly disease outbreaks, including COVID-19. Last month, Ernst was successful on adding an amendment in the Endless Frontier Act, which aims to strengthen U.S competition with China, by pulling further federal grant dollars from going to the lab after it was discovered that $600,000 in taxpayer money went to the WIV.
Now, she's going a step further, with another amendment that would enforce the need for extra transparency for where federal grant dollars are going. It is expected to be discussed this week.
"If we had more of that in the past, we may have discovered the dollars going to Wuhan much earlier on, and certainly would've stopped that revenue stream."
"It is very important that we have that transparency, and that the rules are very clear that we should not be funding activities in adversarial nations. I think that's basic common sense."
In addition, Ernst has called for an independent, scientific investigation into the origins of COVID-19.
Earlier this month, Dr. Anthony Fauci called on China to release the medical records of nine people whose illness may provide clues to whether or not COVID-19 was leaked from the lab.