The White House on Friday said GOP governors who rejected President Biden’s door-to-door vaccine effort are fueling attitudes that are “literally killing people.”
White House press secretary Jen Psaki also said the governors had mischaracterized the initiative.
“The failure to provide the accurate public health information, including the efficacy of vaccines and the accessibility of them to people across the country — including South Carolina — is literally killing people, so maybe they should consider that,” she said.
Ms. Psaki was responding to South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster, who directed state health officials to thwart door-to-door tactics and said “pressuring” people to get vaccinated would be a disastrous policy.
“The prospect of government vaccination teams showing up unannounced or unrequested at the door of ‘targeted’ homeowners or on their property will further deteriorate the public’s trust and could lead to potentially disastrous public safety consequences,” Mr. McMaster wrote to the state Department of Health and Environmental Control Board Chairman Mark Elam.
GOP officials in Missouri and Arizona have also objected vociferously, saying they fear government intrusion or the misuse of health records.
Ms. Psaki said Mr. Biden’s initiative, announced Tuesday, has been misinterpreted by people on the other side of the political aisle.
“This is not federal employees going door to door,” Ms. Psaki said. “This is grassroots volunteers, this is members of the clergy, these are volunteers who believe that people across the country, especially in low-vaccinated areas, should have accurate information.”
“It’s a disservice to the country and to the people who may lose their lives, who may lose family members, to provide inaccurate, disinformation at a moment when we’re still fighting a pandemic,” she said.