After expressing skepticism about a COVID-19 vaccine in October, Democrat New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is now calling for a “public education campaign to battle [vaccine] skepticism.”
Gov. Cuomo spoke late last week about New York’s plan to begin distribution of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine, and Moderna’s likely soon-to-be-approved vaccine.
Pfizer has already shipped 170,000 of its COVID-19 vaccines to New York while Moderna plans to send 346,000 vaccines to the state this month.
“That is the weapon that ends the war. We’re going to need a public education campaign to battle skepticism,” Gov. Cuomo said.
“We have to hit 75 to 85 percent of the population for the vaccine to be effective. We have 50 percent of the population saying they won’t take the vaccine. That’s a problem. We have to outreach to the black, brown, poor communities. That’s basic social justice,” he added.
However, this seems to contradict Gov. Cuomo’s own remarks made in an interview on “Good Morning America” with George Stephanopoulos in late October.
Asked about whether he was confident in the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval process for a vaccine, Gov. Cuomo said he was “not that confident.”
“How confident am I? I’m not that confident, but my opinion doesn’t matter,” Gov. Cuomo said.
“I don’t believe the American people are that confident. You’re going to say to the American people now, here’s a vaccine, it was new, it was done quickly, but trust this federal administration and their health administration that it’s safe and we’re not 100% sure of the consequences?
“I think it’s going to be a very skeptical American public about taking the vaccine, and they should be!” Gov. Cuomo added.
Gov. Cuomo’s remarks were similar to those made by Senator Kamala Harris at the vice-presidential debate on October 7.
“If Dr. Fauci, if the doctors tell us that we should take it (a vaccine), I’ll be the first in line to take it,” she said. “But if Donald Trump tells us that we should take it, I’m not taking it.”
Many politicians on the Left expressed skepticism towards a vaccine before the 2020 General Election but now have embraced it.
The Pfizer vaccine was administered for the first time on Monday, December 12, just one day after the FDA approved distribution. The FDA is expected to approve Moderna’s vaccine later this month, paving the way for millions of Americans to be inoculated against COVID-19 by the end of this year.
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Photo from POOL/REUTERS