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WATCH: Fauci, other federal officials testify about COVID-19 response

The top U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci, on Thursday challenged Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul (the need for mask mandates for those who have already been infected with or vaccinated against COVID-19.

Watch the hearing in the video player above.

“You’re telling everybody to wear a mask,” Paul said. “What studies do you have that people that have had the vaccine or have had the infection are spreading the infection? If we’re not spreading the infection, isn’t it just theater?”

“Here we go again with the theater,” Fauci responded. “Let’s get down to the facts.”

Sen. Rand Paul recovered from the coronavirus last March, and believes he is immune to future infection because of this.

He refuses to wear a mask in the Capitol.

During the senate hearing on federal coronavirus response Paul asserted there are no studies that show significant reinfection among people who have recovered from the virus or after vaccination.

“I agree with you that you very likely would have protection from wild type for at least six months if you’re infected. But we in our country now have variants that are circulating,” Fauci said.

Fauci explained that in a South African study they found that people who were infected with the variant was as if they had never been infected before.”

“That’s a good reason for a mask,” Fauci said.

It’s a policy based on conjecture. You’re making policy based on conjecture!” Paul said, talking over Fauci and accusing him of wanting people to wear masks “for another couple of years.”

“You’ve been vaccinated, and you parade around in two masks for show,” Paul continued.

“If you already have immunity, you’re wearing a mask to give comfort to others. You’re not wearing a mask because of any science.”