Former President Trump said it was not his own fault but Democrats’ for Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy across the country, as he claimed it was looking like he had ‘no choice’ but to run again in 2024.
Trump claimed in an interview with Fox News there were ‘literally lines of people’ waiting to get inoculated when he was in office but now there is a ‘different situation’ because he is gone.
‘If you remember, when I was president, there were literally lines of people wanting to take it,’ Trump said. ‘Now, you have a different situation, and it’s very bad.’
The Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines were given emergency use authorization under the Trump presidency, but were limited to healthcare workers and those in congregate living facilities until after Trump was gone. It fell on the Biden administration to distribute the vaccine to the masses of Americans.
Trump pointed to comments from Vice President Kamala Harris.
‘If you remember, when I was president, there were literally lines of people wanting to take it,’ Trump said. ‘Now, you have a different situation, and it’s very bad’
Anti-vaccine mandate protesters rally outside the garage doors of the Los Angeles Unified School District, LAUSD headquarters in Los Angeles Thursday Sept. 9
‘If the public health professionals, if Dr. [Anthony] Fauci, if the doctors tell us that we should take it, I’ll be the first in line to take it. Absolutely,’ Harris said during a debate last October. ‘But if Donald Trump tells us that we should take it. I’m not taking it.’
‘Of course, they famously said, if Trump came up with it, I’ll never take it,’ Trump recalled.
‘They disparaged the vaccine, and now they wonder why people aren’t wanting to take it?’ He continued. ‘It’s a disgrace.’
Still, Trump again spoke out against vaccine mandates, arguing that they ‘shouldn’t be necessary.’
The former president teased a run for office in 2024, telling Fox News: ‘I don’t think we’re going to have a choice.’
‘It is getting to a point where we really have no choice [but to run],’ he added.
The Biden administration has said they ‘didn’t anticipate’ such resistance to the vaccine being that it was approved under a Republican administration.
‘We didn’t anticipate that when there was a vaccine approved under a Republican president, that the Republican president took, that there would be such hesitation, opposition, vehement opposition in some cases, from so many people of his own party in this country,’ White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday. ‘We didn’t anticipate that.’
Trump claimed earlier this month that he saved ‘millions of lives’ by overseeing coronavirus vaccine development.
‘The vaccines do work,’ he said on the ‘John Fredericks Show,’ a conservative talk radio show. ‘And they are effective. So here’s my thing: I think I saved millions and millions of lives around the world. We would have had another Spanish flu.’
But last month, he was booed at his own rally in Alabama for touting vaccine efficacy.
‘I believe totally in your freedoms, I do, you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do. But I recommend that you take the vaccines,’ Trump said to the crowd, who replied with jeers.
‘You’ve got your freedoms,’ he responded. ‘But I happened to take the vaccine.’
Once the booing stopped, Trump told his supporters they would be the ‘first to know’ if the vaccine was ineffective.
‘If it doesn’t work, you’ll be the first to know. Ok?’ he said. ‘I’ll call up Alabama and say, ‘hey, you know what?’…But, it is working. But you do have your freedoms. You have to keep — you have to maintain that.’
Around 178 million Americans have been fully vaccinated, and 75.4 percent of adults have received at least one shot.
According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), just 1 in 200 Covid-19 deaths in first half of 2021 were among those who had been fully jabbed.