GOP tears up Dem candidates for suggesting they might not take coronavirus vaccine

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Republicans are mounting criticism of some Democrats – including running mate Kamala Harris – who have cast doubt on the safety of a potential coronavirus vaccine amid a persistent push by the president Trump to speed up vaccine development and Trump’s suggestions may even be approved ahead of the presidential election.

Harris and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden have made it clear that they support a vaccine and believe having one is essential to beating the coronavirus. But everyone has made comments suggesting that Trump could push a dangerous coronavirus vaccine on the American people despite procedural guarantees and expert assurances.

Harris earlier this month made perhaps the most controversial comments on the matter. She told CNN that public health experts “will be muzzled, they will be removed, they will be sidelined as he sees an election in less than 60 days, and he is grabbing whatever he can get to pretend that he has been a leader on this issue when he is not. ”

Former Democratic Presidential Vice President Joe Biden and his Vice President Senator Kamala Harris, D-Calif., Arrive to speak at a press conference at Alexis Dupont High School in Wilmington, Calif., On Wednesday, August 12, 2020. Biden and Harris both made comments suggesting that Trump could push a dangerous coronavirus vaccine on the American people. (AP Photo / Carolyn Kaster)

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She added, “I wouldn’t trust Donald Trump and he would have to be a credible source of information that talks about the effectiveness and reliability of whatever he talks about. ”

“I would like to see what the scientists said,” Biden later said in response to a question of whether he would take a vaccine approved by the Trump administration. “I want full transparency on the vaccine. One of the problems is the way he plays with politics. He says so many things that are not true and I worry if we have a really good vaccine people are going to be reluctant. to take it. ”

But Republicans accused Democrats of being the ones undermining faith in a vaccine.

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“The fact that they refuse to say ‘yes, I’m going to take the vaccine’ when public health experts have already said that it is not tainted with policy is reckless and false,” the Trump campaign said in a statement this week.

A previous Trump campaign tweet accused Biden of “spreading conspiracy theories and undermining public confidence in a vaccine.”

Steve Guest, Republican National Committee Rapid Response Director: “Democrats like Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are risking the lives of Americans by denigrating the coronavirus vaccine for political gain. ”

Jeremy Adler, a spokesperson for the Republican House Conference, said this week: “Will other Democrats condemn these irresponsible comments, or will more members of their party interfere with the anti- movement? vaxxer? ”

And Minority House Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., As Republicans pitch their case to voters to take back the House, criticized Harris for his comments on the vaccines.

“As part of our commitment to America, House Republicans have a clear plan to work with President Trump to defeat the virus and keep America healthy through rapid COVID testing, developing a vaccine safe and efficient and by modernizing our medical stock, ”he said. “Compare this achievable agenda with the Democrats’ irresponsible plans: Joe Biden wants to shut down the economy, Kamala Harris is dangerously casting doubt – without evidence – on the promise of a vaccine, and President Pelosi continues to push his list legislation. wishes liberal which mentions more “cannabis” than “jobs”. ”

Trump on Wednesday morning reiterated his message that rapid vaccine development does not mean safety will be compromised.

“Vaccines are advancing quickly and safely! ” he said.

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Cal Cunningham, the Democratic candidate challenging Sen. Thom Tillis, RN.C., made comments similar to those of Biden and Harris during a Monday night debate that led Tillis to condemn his opponent directly on stage.

“Yes, I would hesitate, but I’m going to ask a lot of questions,” Cunningham answered a question from the moderator about whether he would hesitate to get the shot. “I think it’s up to all of us right now. In that environment, with the way we’ve seen politics play out in Washington … Politics, corruption, finances, and politics in Washington are a major issue right now. ”

He later added: “We need the vaccine. This is how we beat this virus. It will take a vaccine. ”

“We just heard a candidate for the US Senate look at the camera and tell 10 million North Carolinians that they would be reluctant to get the vaccine. I think it’s irresponsible, ”Tillis said. “We are not going to release a vaccine that does not have the efficacy and safety that the gold standard demanded by the FDA, but my opponent spoke some time ago about managing a crisis and this he told 10 million people in the North tonight. Carolina is that he would hesitate to get vaccinated. ”

The Biden campaign has hit back at claims that candidates’ comments could harm public health, noting in particular that Trump himself has at times made comments that could harm public health.

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“President Drink Bleach is not credible. The experts are, ”Biden campaign director of rapid response Andrew Bates tweeted after Harris’ initial comments. “There are over 180,000 more people who could tell you if they were here. ”

He was referring to comments Trump had made in April, referring to disinfectants like bleach, in which he asked aloud if there was “a way to do something like this by injecting it into the body.” interior or, or almost, a cleaning? The comment prompted universal condemnation and even the Reckitt Benckiser group, the makers of Lysol, to declare that “under no circumstances should our disinfectants be administered into the human body (by injection, ingestion or any other route).” ”

Bates also highlighted the comments Trump made at an ABC News town hall event on Tuesday night.

“It will go away without the vaccine,” Trump said to anchor George Stephanopolous. “Over a period of time… you will develop like a herd mentality, it’s going to be a developed herd and it’s going to happen. ”

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There was, however, a bipartisan agreement on a vaccine and its safety. Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Directly questioned Surgeon General Jerone Adams on whether he could guarantee that a vaccine ultimately approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) would be safe and effective during a Senate Health, education, work and pensions hear this month.

“There will be no shortcuts. This vaccine will be safe. It will be effective. Or it won’t be moved. And when a vaccine is approved or cleared by the FDA, my family and I will be in line to get that, ”Adams says.

“Thanks,” Sanders said. “I think that’s the kind of answer Americans are trying to hear. ”

Trump made his boldest statement on a potential coronavirus vaccine yet in an interview with “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday morning, saying a vaccine could come “in a few weeks.”

U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams speaks during a coronavirus briefing in the Brady press conference room at the White House, Saturday, March 14, 2020, in Washington.  Adams reassured Americans this month that a coronavirus vaccine

U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams speaks during a coronavirus briefing in the Brady press conference room at the White House, Saturday, March 14, 2020, in Washington. Adams reassured Americans this month that a coronavirus vaccine “will be safe. It will be effective. Or it won’t be moved. (AP Photo / Alex Brandon)

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“I’m not doing it for political reasons, I want the vaccine quickly,” Trump said of the campaign for a vaccine, called “Operation Warp Speed”.

“You wouldn’t have a vaccine for years” under another administration, he continued. “I accelerated the process with the FDA… We’re going to have a vaccine in a few weeks, it could take four weeks, it could be eight weeks… we have a lot of big companies. ”

Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has repeatedly said that there is a possibility that a vaccine will be approved as safe and effective by the end of 2020 or early 2021 The challenge after that, however, is to mass-manufacture the vaccine and distribute it to hundreds of millions of Americans.

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