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Trump just announced his pick to run CDC — and anti-vaxxers feel betrayed

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The Trump administration on Friday announced that it was appointing Brenda Fitzgerald, who has served as Georgia’s Public Health Commissioner since 2011, to be the new director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

While Fitzgerald is widely respected in public health circles, she is highly controversial among a certain segment of President Donald Trump’s base: Anti-vaccination activists who had previously been encouraged by Trump’s public denunciations of mandatory vaccination programs.

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Jake Crosby, who runs the Autism Investigated anti-vaccination website, warned Trump last week that he would be betraying his anti-vaxxer supporters if he appointed Fitzgerald to head CDC.

In particular, Crosby pointed out that Fitzgerald recently wrote that all studies that have purportedly linked childhood vaccinations with autism had been “debunked.”

“If you want a genuine vaccine safety commission as you promised Robert F. Kennedy Jr., it will not work with federal agency heads all wanting to keep the status quo,” he wrote. “You have already appointed someone to run the FDA who has testified that he will challenge you on vaccine safety. There was no major outcry then because, unlike CDC, FDA does not dictate federal vaccine policy.”

An anti-vaccination blogger named Levi Quackenboss, meanwhile, was slightly more charitable than Crosby was to Trump’s choice of Fitzgerald, although they still made clear they did not approve of the decision in the slightest.

“I don’t know why she’s been appointed,” they wrote. “I watch House of Cards so I can only imagine the deals that go down before this kind of decision is made.”

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On Twitter, meanwhile, assorted anti-vaxxers have taken turns raking Trump over the coals for his decision to appoint Fitzgerald to run CDC.

https://twitter.com/Paulthoughts/status/881478012407042048

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Florida reports record number of coronavirus deaths one month ahead of GOP convention

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Florida, the new epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic in the United States, reported a record 156 COVID-19 deaths on Thursday and nearly 14,000 new infections.

The total number of virus cases in the "Sunshine State" has now surpassed 315,000 and there have been 4,782 deaths, according to Florida Department of Health figures.

The reporting of 156 virus deaths in the state in a 24-hour period surpasses the previous high of 132 deaths announced just two days earlier.

Florida is now reporting more COVID-19 cases daily than any other state in the country. California and Texas are next with about 10,000 new cases a day.

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GOP officials admit 2020 platform is basically whatever’s on Trump’s Twitter account

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President Donald Trump has shaped the Republican Party into his own image in less than four years on the job, and that doesn't seem likely to change anytime soon.

Nearly half of the House Republicans on the job when Trump took office in 2017 have either retired, resigned, been defeated or are retiring in 2020, and many of the GOP newcomers are devoted Trump loyalists, reported Politico.

“Whether the president wins or loses, his policy views and style have firmly taken over the Republican Party — nationalism and white grievance, those kinds of things,” said Matt Moore, former chairman of South Carolina's GOP. “I don’t think that Trumpy politics will be leaving the stage anytime soon.”

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Coronavirus data disappears from CDC dashboard after Trump hijacks info

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The Trump administration on Tuesday forced all hospitals and states to make a significant and immediate change in how they report coronavirus patient data, hijacking the information to be funneled into the Dept. of Health and Human Services.

Experts warned the move could allow the administration to politicize the data, hide it, be less transparent, all of which interferes in the real-time usage of information to fight the coronavirus pandemic.

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