Prominent Republicans find new enthusiasm for COVID-19 vaccines
Some GOP lawmakers and media representatives have made it a point to publicly support coronavirus vaccines as the Delta variant rips through parts of the country with low vaccination rates.
Why It Matters: Republicans are much higher vaccine resistance than Democrats, and some party leaders have been open to US vaccination efforts despite the effectiveness of the vaccinations.
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Driving news: Members of the House's GOP leadership and GOP Medical Committee are holding a press conference this morning to "discuss the need to get vaccinated, uncover the origins of the pandemic, and keep schools and businesses open," according to one press Publication.
Participants include representatives Elise Stefanik and Steve Scalise, who received his first vaccination last weekend.
"Especially since the Delta variant is getting a lot more aggressive and seeing further spike, it was a good time to do so," Scalise told NOLA.com.
Other prominent conservatives also spoke out on the vaccine's benefits this week.
“For many Americans, it makes perfect sense to get vaccinated. I believe in science. I believe in the science of vaccination, "Fox News' Sean Hannity said on Monday's show.
"These shots need to go in all arms asap, or we'll end up in a situation we don't long for again in the fall that we went through last year," R-Ky.) Said Tuesday.
The big picture: Among the unvaccinated - who are disproportionately likely to be Republicans or live in red counties and states - the pandemic is far from over.
As several media outlets pointed out recently, reluctance to use GOP vaccines has turned into open opposition or hostility in some cases.
Yes, but: even among vaccine advocates, news can be confusing or contradicting.
Hannity followed up on his vaccine endorsement Monday with an interview with a woman who protested her college's vaccination requirement, according to the AP, and other Fox hosts have continued to criticize the vaccine or vaccination efforts.
Governors and state lawmakers have passed or are pushing to ban vaccination requirements and protect unvaccinated people from "discrimination".
What Trump Says: The former president's recent statement about vaccines didn't exactly encourage her.
"People refuse to take the vaccine because they don't trust [Biden's] government, they don't trust the election results, and they certainly don't trust the fake news that refuses to tell the truth," Trump said last weekend.
Bottom Line: The vast majority of Americans who are still dying from the virus are unvaccinated, and it is ultimately not in the interests of politicians to prevent their supporters from getting the vaccine.
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