Dr. Anthony Fauci, White House chief medical adviser, dismissed concerns over vaccine mandates one year ago, explicitly stating that one “cannot force someone to take a vaccine.”
“I don’t think you’ll ever see a mandating of vaccine, particularly for the general public,” Fauci said during a Healthline townhall in August 2020.
“If someone refuses the vaccine in the general public, then there’s nothing you can do about that,” he said at the time. “You cannot force someone to take a vaccine”:
Dr. Fauci, the US' leading infectious disease expert, says he doesn't foresee a Covid-19 vaccine mandate.
“If someone refuses the vaccine in the general public, then there's nothing you can do about that. You cannot force someone to take a vaccine." https://t.co/CiRNP5bwUF
— CNN (@CNN) August 19, 2020
Like he has on other issues, such as the use of masks, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases director has since evolved, altering his position on vaccine mandates and explicitly expressing support for local vaccine mandates.
“I respect people’s freedom, but when you’re talking about a public health crisis, that we’ve been going through now for well over a year and a half, the time is come, enough is enough,” Fauci said last month. “We’ve just got to get people vaccinated.”
“There comes a time when you’re dealing with a public health crisis, that could involve you, your family, and everyone else that something supersedes that need to do exactly what you want to do,” Fauci continued.
During an August appearance on CBS News’s Face the Nation, Fauci said Americans needed to “put aside all of these issues of concern about liberties and personal liberties, and realize we have a common enemy, and that common enemy is the virus.”
The flashback comes as President Biden mandates vaccines for massive sectors of the economy, imposing vaccine requirements on federal workers, federal contractors, certain healthcare workers, and businesses that have over 100 employees.
“This is not about freedom or personal choice,” Biden said during Thursday’s divisive speech, in which he announced the Department of Labor is “developing an emergency rule to require all employers with 100 or more employees that together employ over 80 million workers to ensure their work forces are fully vaccinated or show a negative test at least once a week.”
“Some of the biggest companies are already requiring this: United Airlines, Disney, Tyson Foods and even Fox News. The bottom line: We’re going to protect vaccinated workers from unvaccinated co-workers,” Biden said.
“We’re going to reduce the spread of Covid-19 by increasing the share of the work force that is vaccinated in businesses all across America,” He continued:
My plan will extend the vaccination requirements that I previously issued in the health care field. Already, I’ve announced we’ll be requiring vaccinations that all nursing home workers who treat patients on Medicare and Medicaid, because I have that federal authority,
Biden announced his move to use that “same authority to expand that, to cover those who work in hospitals, home health care facilities, or other medical facilities.”
“A total of 17 million health care workers. If you’re seeking care at a health facility, you should be able to know that the people treating you are vaccinated — simple, straightforward, period,” he said before also announcing his decision to sign an executive order requiring “all executive branch federal employees to be vaccinated — all.”
“I’ve signed another executive order that will require federal contractors to do the same. If you want to work with the federal government and do business with us, get vaccinated. If you want to do business with the federal government, vaccinate your work force,” Biden said, raging at the unvaccinated and warning that his “patience is wearing thin.”
On Thursday, Fauci said Biden was “being somewhat moderate” with his demands. During an appearance on Anderson Cooper 360, he said:
Well, I think the President is, you know, being somewhat moderate in his demand if you want to call it that, in that there are some people who really don’t want to get vaccinated, but they don’t want to lose their job. You got to give them an off-lane, and the off-lane is if you get tested frequently enough and find out you’re positive, you won’t come to work, and you won’t infect other people. So, it really is somewhat of a compromise there.
“Myself, I would make it just vaccinate or not, but he was trying to be moderate in what his pronouncement was,” he added.