This liberal journalist’s defense of COVID vax mandates makes zero sense

'I'm a complete hard-liner on this.'

It’s hard to believe, but some liberal journalists are still defending COVID-19 vaccine mandates. Yes, in 2023. Chief among them is ex-CNN analyst Jeffrey Toobin—yes, that Jeffrey Toobin—who recently defended forcibly mandating the COVID vaccine in an appearance on the PBD Podcast. 

“I’m a complete hard-liner on this,” Toobin said. “At CNN and at Fox, you were not allowed in the building unless you were vaccinated. I thought it was exactly the right thing to do. It’s a communicable disease that you could reduce your risk to yourself and the people around you to a scientific certainty. That was a rule that was excellent.”

“You’re allowed to have opinions about anything you want but at some point when your opinions put other people at physical risk, as vaccine deniers did, that crossed the line,” Toobin concluded. “You’re not free to put other people in danger.”

This logic might apply in some contexts, like schools, to other vaccines. But it absolutely does not—and never has—applied to the COVID-19 vaccine.

Why? It’s simple: Despite the many “experts” and pundits who claimed otherwise, the COVID vaccine doesn’t stop you from getting and spreading COVID-19. Some still insist that it reduces spread, but regardless, even when vaccinated, people easily still spread COVID-19. So there is little to no interpersonal benefit to COVID vaccination.

The primary benefit is to the individual who takes it, as it reduces the chance of hospitalization or death from COVID-19. That’s all well and good, and it’s why elderly people or those at risk from COVID-19 should talk with their doctors and seriously consider taking the vaccine.

But if your choice to be vaccinated or not just affects you, then others have absolutely no business getting involved in that choice. And if the vaccines truly protect you the way they’re supposed to, then you shouldn’t need to worry about whether the people around you are vaccinated or not—because you’re safe.

I disagreed with them at the time, but early on, when people thought the COVID vaccine stopped people from spreading the disease, I could at least see some logic behind why they were supporting mandates. But now that we know otherwise, it’s bizarre to see people still twisting themselves into pretzels to defend these policies.

Some honest journalists who pushed vaccine mandates, like Piers Morgan, have now admitted they were wrong as the facts have evolved. Then there’s folks like Jeffrey Toobin, who will seemingly never admit the error of their ways no matter how detached their arguments become from reality.

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Brad Polumbo
Brad Polumbo
Brad Polumbo is a libertarian-conservative journalist and co-founder of Based Politics. His work has been cited by top lawmakers such as Senator Rand Paul, Senator Ted Cruz, Senator Pat Toomey, Congresswoman Nancy Mace, Congressman Thomas Massie, and former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, as well as by prominent media personalities such as Jordan Peterson, Sean Hannity, Dave Rubin, Ben Shapiro, and Mark Levin. Brad has also testified before the US Senate, appeared on Fox News and Fox Business, and written for publications such as USA Today, National Review, Newsweek, and the Daily Beast. He hosts the Breaking Boundaries podcast and has a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.