Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, recently called for local governments to issue vaccination mandates.
During an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, Fauci discussed the fact that many Americans remain unvaccinated. After arguing that “there’s no reason not to get vaccinated,” he said:
Why are we having red states and places in the South that are very highly ideological in one way not wanting to get vaccinations? Vaccinations have nothing to do with politics. It’s a public health issue. It doesn’t matter who you are.
He continued, insisting that “the virus doesn’t know whether you’re a Democrat, a Republican, or an Independent” and that the debate over the matter “is really unfortunate because it’s losing lives.”
Tapper brought up the suggestion by several in the media that the government mandate vaccinations. He asked Fauci if he would approve of such a measure. The doctor responded:
I have been of this opinion, and I remain of that opinion, that I do believe, at the local level, Jake, there should be more mandates. There really should be. We’re talking about a life-and-death situation. We have lost 600,000 Americans already, and we’re still losing more people.
One of the things that will happen — and I think the hesitancy at the local level of doing mandates is because the vaccines have not been officially fully approved. But people need to understand that the amount of data right now that shows a high degree of effectiveness and a high degree of safety is more than we have ever seen with emergency use authorization.
Fauci also asserted that the vaccinations “are as good as officially approved with all the I’s dotted and the T’s crossed.”
Despite declaring that it would see 70% of Americans vaccinated by July 4, the Biden administration has failed to meet its objective. The president’s team has indicated it would support local governments in mandating vaccines. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki stated there would be no federal action to require people to accept the injection.
Public opinion on vaccine mandates varies. Still, there can be no doubt that such an initiative would meet with aggressive pushback – especially if they are intended to apply to all Americans. There is still significant support for the idea that personal choice is sacrosanct. While state and local governments have offered various incentives for people to take the jab, so far, none of them made a serious push for requiring everyone to make this decision. But this does not mean that the hard left will not attempt to persuade governments to take this step.
At the end of the day, the decision of whether to take the vaccination should be left up to the individual. As many noted throughout the pandemic, people can make their own decisions and take appropriate precautions to lower the risk of being infected with the coronavirus. If the government is able to force people to let them put a substance into their body, how much further will they go in other matters?