Governor Whitmer Is Against Mandating Vaccinations For Children

( Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has been heavily criticized by conservatives across the country for the last few years, but comments the Democrat made this week would seem to actually align with conservative views.

During a debate on Tuesday, Whitmer said she would be opposed to make a COVID-19 vaccine mandatory for children before they could attend school in the state. The topic of the debate was new guidelines recently released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that urged all children to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

In the same reply where she defended her own record of governing during the pandemic, Whitmer said:

“I do not support requiring the COVID vaccine for children. We make quick decisions to save lives, and studies show we saves thousands. I am proud of that.”

Whitmer is running for re-election against Republican candidate Tudor Dixon, and polls are showing that the race is very tight.

Dixon has worked hard to make the top issue of the race how Whitmer led Michigan through the COVID-19 pandemic. As she said recently:

“Like many of you, I had a small business crushed [by coronavirus lockdowns]. Like many of you, I lost a loved one. Gretchen Whitmer doesn’t want to be defined by her carelessness or dishonesty or her hypocrisy during that time.”

In early October, the CDC voted to add inoculation against the coronavirus to its Vaccines for Children Program. While having the COVID-19 vaccine a part of that program doesn’t instantly make the vaccine mandatory for all children, it does put it on a list of vaccines that they recommend and that they provide to all physicians.

After the CDC released the guidelines, most Republican governors denounced them. Many said they would block any school district that tried to adopt COVID-19 vaccines being a pre-requisite for any child to attend school.

For example, Idaho Republican Governor Brad Little said:

“I will never mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for Idahoans of any age group, especially children. As long as I am governor, that decision will be determined solely by parents, families and individual citizens.”

Other Republicans have taken those comments even further.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, for instance, argued since the COVID-19 vaccine is still relatively new, it might not even be suitable for younger children to get. He said recently:

“I get a kick out of it when people kind of compare it to (measles, mumps and rubella shots) and things that have been around for decades and decades. These are new shots.”

Most Democratic governors have either remained silent on the issue or haven’t been as forward about their thoughts as Whitmer was this week. California Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom said the CDC’s new guidelines would have no new immediate impact on parents or children in his state.

A spokesman for the California governor commented:

“The main impact of the CDC recommendation is that health insurance companies will be required to cover the cost of the immunization and that the federal government can continue to provide it for free to low-income families. It’s interesting that Republican states are criticizing this as schools already require vaccinations for chickenpox, polio, measles and more.”