DeSantis slams Biden as anti-science for maintaining restrictions, downplaying vaccines

DeSantis slams Biden as anti-science for maintaining restrictions, downplaying vaccines
AP Photo/Brynn Anderson
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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is bringing the offensive to Democrat President Joe Biden for the president’s “anti-science” posture on the coronavirus. 

Speaking at a news conference on Monday, in which DeSantis signed an executive order to end all coronavirus-related restrictions in the state of Florida, the governor took Biden and his administration to task for their policies. 

DeSantis’ remarks follow praise from Jay Bhattacharya, professor of medicine at Stanford University, who praised the governor for being educated on the science of the coronavirus. The professor said DeSantis understands the issue better than “most epidemiologists.” 

“I think there have been two very harmful things that have been done recently, in terms of increasing vaccine hesitancy,” DeSantis said. “The first was how the FDA and CDC handled the Johnson and Johnson [vaccine]. Look, when you’re dealing with these vaccines, you always want to see if there’s an issue. You can put out appropriate warnings, particularly if it’s for a certain demographic, but by hastily taking it effectively off the market, I think that that’s caused confidence in, at least that vaccine, to plummet. And that was a very high demand vaccine prior to that happening. So, I think that was handled in a way that has increased the hesitancy of people to get the vaccine.”

“And then I think the other thing, quite frankly, is when you have people, particularly in Washington, saying, ‘Yeah, get vaccinated, but then make sure you continue to social distance and wear masks all the time,’ well, the message that that sends to people is that the vaccines don’t work,” DeSantis added. 

“Because if the vaccines worked, that would be your ticket to basically live normally, and make decisions for yourself. That would be the message that actually would work with people. So, I think that they’ve sent a message to say, ‘You know what? Get vaccinated, but it really isn’t going to do anything for you,'” he said. 

“Well, why would someone want to put something in their arm if they don’t think it’s effective?” DeSantis continued. “And the fact of the matter is, that is an anti-science posture, to say that we need all these restrictions even with mass vaccination. Because the numbers of the vaccines are better than the clinical trials were, in terms of the effectiveness. If you look at CDC, I think they have over 95 million people have now been vaccinated. The people that have been re-infected or infected after vaccine, has been way less than one-tenth of 1%. These numbers are about as good as you could possibly hope for.

“So my message is the vaccines protect you, get vaccinated, and then live your life as if you’re protected. You don’t have to chafe under restrictions infinitum,” concluded the governor. 

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