- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Former President Donald Trump urged Americans to get vaccinated against COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, as recent polling showed 45% of fellow Republicans are hesitant to do so.

“I encourage them to take it, I do,” Mr. Trump told Fox News host Sean Hannity during an on-camera interview, his first as former president, that aired Monday.

“I had it, and I took it,” added Mr. Trump, who tested positive for COVID-19 in October, recovered and was later vaccinated before leaving office in January.

More than 130 million Americans have received a COVID-19 vaccine since they became available, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including half of adults over the age of 18.

Recent polling found that Republicans are far more reluctant to receive a COVID-19 vaccine than Democrats, however, which Mr. Trump also touched on while talking with Mr. Hannity.

“They all want me to do a commercial because a lot of our people don’t want to take [the] vaccine,” Mr. Trump said. “I don’t know what that is exactly. Republican. I don’t know what it is.”

The poll, conducted by Quinnipiac University, found that 27% of respondents — including 45% of Republicans and 7% of Democrats — said they do not plan to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Roughly two-thirds of all respondents — 68% — said they plan to get or already received a COVID-19 vaccine, according to Quinnipiac. That includes 50% of Republicans and 91% of Democrats.

Quinnipiac said it surveyed a total of 1,237 adults for the poll between April 8 and 12 and that its results have a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percentage points.

President Biden, Mr. Trump‘s successor, has pledged to have at least 200 million COVID-19 vaccinations administered during his first 100 days in office. He is set to reach that goal on schedule.

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