CNN woke up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed and decided today is the day to grab the bullshit by the tail and face the situation:
(CNN)Under the guise of “just asking the questions,” Republican Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin spread anti-vaccine misinformation on a right-wing radio show Thursday, questioning why efforts were being made to vaccinate the general US population, especially young people and those who had previously been infected with Covid-19…
In Thursday’s interview with conservative radio host Vicki McKenna, Johnson suggested there have been thousands of deaths connected to Covid-19 vaccinations and that receiving a vaccine could be particularly dangerous for those who had previously been infected.
And how does RoJo support those claims?
To defend his position and call into question the safety of Covid-19 vaccines, Johnson cited numbers from the federal Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), which allows anyone to submit a report. Johnson said that according to the system, “we’re over 3000 deaths after within 30 days of taking the vaccine,” suggesting these deaths were tied to Covid-19 vaccines.
And now the fact-checking begins!
Facts First: Johnson’s insinuation that these reported deaths are tied to Covid-19 vaccines is entirely false. VAERS is not an official, vetted report of vaccine-related incidents. Anyone can submit a report and, as the system’s website notes, “VAERS is not designed to determine if a vaccine caused a health problem” and “the reports may contain information that is incomplete, inaccurate, coincidental, or unverifiable.” Instead, the system allows the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and US Food and Drug Administration to monitor for vaccine adverse events and conduct follow-up investigations.
And now for the walk-back:
Johnson’s senior communications adviser Alexa Henning told CNN in an email Friday evening, “The Senator is not suggesting the deaths were directly caused by the covid-19 vaccine,” adding that Johnson is instead calling for the submissions to VAERS to be taken “seriously and research what is going on.” Henning also noted Johnson’s support for the development of Covid-19 vaccines under the Trump administration.
RoJo is slipping. As most of the holdouts are holding out from being vaccinated against the Trump-Virus for assholish reasons (and the strangely cognitive-dissonance of loyalty to TFG —who brags that HE ALONE DEVELOPED THE LIFE SAVING VACCINE— they are not hesitant out of fear of the vaccine killing them: they would rather die than be saved by a Democratic Administration, you know, to own the libs.