Republican lawmakers and officials have been increasingly encouraging Americans to get their COVID-19 vaccinations.
This sudden push comes after months of conservative and right-leaning Americans raising concerns over mandated vaccines and the alleged side effects some people are experiencing. Now, several Republican politicians, such as Senator Mitch McConnell (KY), Governor Kay Ivey (AL), Senator Chris VanHollen (MD), and Representative Steve Scalise (LA), have been encouraging Americans to get vaccinated for the coronavirus, as the Delta strain has spread.
McConnell tweeted, “Get vaccinated! These shots need to get into arms as rapidly as possible, or else we’re gonna be back in a situation this fall like what we went through last year.” Ivey met with a reporter from WSFA-12 News on Friday, who tweeted her message to Alabamans was to “get vaccinated”.
VanHollen tweeted in defense of Dr. Fauci on July 20 after Fauci’s testimony and thanked him for his work. Scalise got his first shot over the weekend and told reporters, “there shouldn’t be any hesitancy over whether or not it’s safe and effective.” Sean Hannity, a Fox News show host, once called the novel coronavirus a hoax, but is now telling people they should look into getting the vaccine.
GOP pollster, Frank Luntz, has been working with the Biden administration to get more people vaccinated. He took to Twitter, alleging that the average age of those currently hospitalized for covid is 49, whereas it was in the 60s during other parts of the pandemic. This, he claims, is due to the fact that younger populations are avoiding getting vaccinated, while older generations already have.
He believes that Republicans are now encouraging constituents to get vaccinated so they won’t be blamed for widespread death from the virus in the future. These statements come just a few months after former employees claimed that his work is fraudulent. He has received backlash for his recent work with the Biden administration, but has stated he doesn’t care.
CNN released a poll in mid-May saying that 100% of Democrats in the House and Senate had been vaccinated. Meanwhile, at the time, nearly 45% of Republicans had received their vaccine. However, several fully vaccinated congresspeople have caught the virus despite their vaccination status.
The Washington Post reported that the GOP Doctors Caucus will soon be releasing public service announcements and holding news conferences encouraging Americans to get the vaccine. While the number of Republican lawmakers encouraging people to get vaccinated increases, there are still a large number who continue to say that it is a personal choice to get the vaccine and are not actively encouraging people to get it.
ARTICLE: RITA VOGT
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: WALL STREET JOURNAL
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