A sprawling report just released by Sen. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) has found that the COVID-19 pandemic likely began with two separate lab leaks, including one that may have occurred as early as summer of 2019.
Marshall’s 301-page report — prepared by Dr. Bob Kadlec, who headed the Operation Warp Speed COVID-19 vaccine development program — was completed after 18 months of extensive research, which analyzed two plausible hypotheses for the pandemic’s origin: natural zoonotic spillover from a market in Wuhan, and the lab leak theory.
Despite now being considered the source of the pandemic, when the lab leak theory gained momentum in early 2020, it was widely considered a conspiracy theory, resulting in social media posts being flagged for misinformation, as well as restrictions and suspensions against individuals who pushed the idea.
“This report concludes most likely this was two leaks [including] a lab leak in the September-October  timeframe, even as early as July or August,” Marshall told reporters ahead of the the report’s publication.
“We’ve concluded that [China] started vaccine development in November 2019. And then another lab leak seems to be most sensible explanation,” the senator added. “There are key data points that are being held back that could help us prove that.”
According to the report, “epidemiological and genetic molecular analyses of the early published circulating Wuhan SARS-CoV-2 strains supported the possibility of two spillover events two or more weeks apart.”
While answering questions regarding the new report, Marshall expressed concern over the lack of safety protocols at facilities doing gain-of-function research.
“I think we’re in no better shape today than we were a year ago, three years ago, as far as I’m concerned,” Marshall said in response to a question from Just the News.
“There’s nothing proving to me that they’re doing this type of research in BSL-4 labs,” he continued. “Their own documents continue to show that they’re understaffed, that they don’t have the right facilities to do it in, a huge concern. That’s why we’ve been calling for a halt in all viral gain-of-function research until we get the guardrails around it.”