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Tipsheet

This Fact Check of Ron DeSantis Did Not Age Well

AP Photo/Chris O'Meara

With boosters being pushed in the U.S. and some places abroad, those who got the initial jab(s) and those who didn’t have something in common: they’re now both increasingly being considered unvaccinated. Gov. Ron DeSantis predicted this would be the case not long ago, but fact checkers went after him for it.

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During a press conference in November in which the Florida governor criticized federal vaccine mandates, he said the heavy hand of government will force more restrictions on people unless they fight back.

“[U]ltimately, people should be able to make these decisions. I don’t think people want this decision [about one’s own healthcare] yanked away from them. I don’t think they want to allow a precedent where the federal government could come in and just force you to do what it wants you to do,” he said. “And make no mistake about it, those individuals who have been gone through a normal vaccination series for COVID, you will be determined to be unvaccinated very soon. They will do that. They are going to tell you, ‘You’re unvaccinated and you have to get a booster. Otherwise, you could potentially face loss of employment or other types of penalties.’”

The Independent soon after gave the statement a “false” rating, pointing to what Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said the day before. 

“The definition of ‘fully vaccinated’ is one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and two doses of the either Pfizer vaccine or the Moderna vaccine,” she said in response to a question about whether the CDC would soon be reevaluating the definition of fully vaccinated. “And we’re not examining changing that definition anytime at this point.”

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While the federal government’s vaccine mandates have not at this point made boosters a requirement, the CDC has changed its guidance based on whether an individual has received a booster or not. 

The agency’s updated guidelines lump those who have been fully vaccinated over six months ago for Pfizer and Moderna shots, and more than two months ago for the Johnson & Johnson jab with the unvaccinated. Only boosted individuals (or those who completed their initial vaccines recently) who have been exposed to someone with Covid-19 don’t have to quarantine. 

Regardless of whether the CDC has officially changed the definition of fully vaccinated, boosters are increasingly being required in the U.S.

More than 75 universities have required boosters for students returning to campus in the winter, according to data compiled by the Chronicle of Higher Education. New Mexico mandated the extra dose for some state employees.

Molson Coors Beverage Co. recently decided to implement a booster requirement for U.S. employees after instituting a vaccine mandate in August. [...]

New York’s Metropolitan Opera said it is requiring all staff, performers and audience members to get a booster to attend a performance, starting Jan. 17. The L.A. Music Center, including venues such as Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Ahmanson Theatre, said it would require boosters for audience members and staff who are eligible.

Danny Meyer, head of Union Square Hospitality Group, said on CNBC Wednesday that his restaurants such as Gramercy Tavern and Union Square Cafe would require customers to show proof of a booster to dine indoors, and employees and new hires must also receive boosters.

A survey of 200 major employers conducted earlier this month by Gartner found 8% of the businesses are redefining what it means to be fully vaccinated and are requiring workers to get booster shots. (WSJ)

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Critics pointed out that this was happening even in early November. 

Needless to say, it has not aged well.

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