Speed Reads

you can't have it both ways

Fox News amplifies anti-vaccine messages after Biden push

Following President Biden's call for "door-to-door" vaccine advocacy, Fox News and other right-leaning media outlets appear to be ramping up anti-vax rhetoric focused on two competing ideas — (1) vaccinations are dangerous, overhyped and shouldn't be required or even encouraged, but (2) they're an important and unrecognized accomplishment of former President Donald Trump, Media Matters reported on Thursday.

On Wednesday, conservative activist Charlie Kirk likened vaccination guidelines to apartheid in an interview with Tucker Carlson, saying inoculation requirements resemble an "apartheid-style, open-air hostage situation." 

Fellow right-wing activist and commentator Candace Owens echoed that mentality on Twitter, emphasizing her family's right to abstain from the COVID-19 shot.

Even though Owens and other influential figures have voiced what is a consistently prevalent argument among vaccine skeptics, Newsmax contributor Mark Halperin wants to make sure Trump receives the recognition he deserves for helping develop the vaccine. "President Trump doesn't get nearly enough credit for what he did to unshackle the administration and the regulation and allowed these private-sector companies to go forward," he said.

Perfectly illustrating these conflicting complaints, Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade said Thursday that "the focus of this administration on vaccination is mind boggling," adding that Americans are now being "berated" by Dr. Anthony Fauci.

But Kilmeade, much like Halperin, also wanted to "underline the fact that this vaccine was driven by the Trump administration ... As much as [the Biden administration wants] you vaccinated, they are determined not to let you know who came up with it."

Co-host Pete Hegseth then "cued up a video clip from [Laura Ingraham's] show the night before, in which a guest claimed that 'no one under the age of 30' should get the vaccines," Media Matters writes. Read more at Media Matters.