Newsom Slams Tucker Carlson and Marjorie Taylor Greene for Anti-Vax Rhetoric: ‘They’re Literally Putting People’s Lives at Risk’


On Monday, California announced it would require all healthcare workers and state employees to provide proof of vaccination against Covid-19 or be tested once a week for the virus as a condition for employment. Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom appeared on MSNBC to discuss the policy. About 62% of Californians are fully vaccinated and about 9% are partially vaccinated. The state is seeing about 7,500 new cases each day, with the delta variant accounting for 83% of them.

Host Ayman Mohyeldin asked Newsom why there’s so much vaccine hesitancy. The governor said that conservative media is largely to blame, and also called out Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), and Fox News host Tucker Carlson:

Well, [the] overwhelming majority of misinformation by right wing pundits. Period. Full stop. Time to be a little more specific. The Ron Johnsons of the world, the Marjorie Taylor Greenes of the world, the Tucker Carlsons of the world. I watch them. I listen. I pay attention. They’re misinforming people. They’re literally putting people’s lives at risk. People are dying because of the misinformation either knowingly or unknowingly, regardless. Time to call it out, draw these lines.

Newsom also engaged Greene on Twitter on Monday, after she denounced his “communist dictatorship.” The governor said her “anti-vaccine lies are literally killing Americans.”

As for Carlson, his coverage of the vaccine has has received serious criticism. He has said a few times he’s personally pro-vaccine, and in April he stated, “We are not against it on principle. Like every American, we are grateful. But before we take this one, a few questions about it.”

The aforementioned “questions” Carlson says he has have colored many of his segments about the vaccine, and has called its safety into question. On multiple occasions he has cited the flawed Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System to highlight examples of people reporting serious negative side effects, which can easily leave viewers with the impression that it is not safe. He has also hosted on numerous occasions Alex Berenson, whom The Atlantic dubbed “the pandemic’s wrongest man.” Berenson has made statements against the vaccine, and was famously applauded at CPAC this year for saying the government has been unable to “sucker” people into getting the it.

Some other notable Fox hosts have publicly encouraged vaccines, including Steve Doocy — who is featured in a vaccine PSA from the network.

Newsom said that the same kinds of people pushing ant-vaccine rhetoric are the ones behind the effort to recall him as governor.

“There’s been a right wing talking point here, and it’s overwhelmingly coming from certain certain networks,” he said. “And it’s having an impact on getting this disease behind us. Now it’s impacting our economy. It’s impacting not just our public health, it’s impacting our ability to get our kids into school. So enough. And including by the way the folks that are behind this damn recall in California.”

The recall election will be held in September.

Watch above via MSNBC

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Mike is a Mediaite senior editor who covers the news in primetime.