Fox host on promising vaccine news: “Are you finding the timing curious? We had an election a week ago”

Video file

Citation From the November 9, 2020, edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends

AINSLEY EARHARDT (CO-HOST): Are you finding the timing curious? We had an election a week ago.

CHARLES PAYNE (FOX BUSINESS HOST): I am finding the timing curious. It's frustrating. You know, it's so interesting. I was watching -- toggling around TV yesterday, watching a couple games and whatever, and I saw a commercial for 60 Minutes and they said "we're going to go to the military's Operation Warp Speed." The military's? They're actually operating it, in fact, at the behest of President Trump. And then there's an article this morning before this came out that was, the shifting sort-of Operation Warp Speed to Biden now. The Washington Post: Biden advisers met with sharp -- with the Warp Speed drugmakers before the election. But what I thought was intriguing is on the Biden website, it says "Operation Warp Speed lacks a strategy to see its mission through and gain the trust of Americans." Well, I wonder what they're going to say today? Are they going to tell people not to take this vaccine that Pfizer is saying 90% effective? Are they going to say wait? I mean this is absolutely remarkable stuff. Credit where credit is due; President Trump, he really did push hard on this. Who knows, if it came a week earlier it might have changed the outcome, but it is great news for all Americans. 

Pfizer's head of vaccine development Dr. Kathrin Jansen told the New York Times that “We were never part of the Warp Speed. ... We have never taken any money from the U.S. government, or from anyone.”

Jansen also explained the timing of the news release to the Times:

She said she learned of the results from the outside panel of experts shortly after 1 p.m. on Sunday, and that the timing was not influenced by the election. “We have always said that science is driving how we conduct ourselves — no politics,” she said.

The data released by Pfizer Monday was delivered in a news release, not a peer-reviewed medical journal. It is not conclusive evidence that the vaccine is safe and effective, and the initial finding of more than 90 percent efficacy could change as the trial goes on. “We need to see the actual data, and we’re going to need longer-term results,” said Jesse Goodman, a professor of medicine and infectious diseases at Georgetown University.

Update (11/9/20, 11:30 a.m.): Sen. Chris Murphy clarified, regarding government spending:

Update (11/9/20, 12:30 p.m.): Pfizer issued a statement regarding its participation in Operation Warp Speed: