Panelists on “The View” hammered Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson for giving ambiguous answers about mandatory vaccinations.
The long-shot candidate has apologized for describing vaccination mandates as “draconian” and “Orwellian,” saying she believes vaccines are important but understands public skepticism, and co-host Meghan McCain asked her to square those views with her advocacy for children.
“This sounds a lot like Trump, just so we’re clear, this is his message,” McCain said. “You’re talking a lot about children of America, the children, how much you care about children, you also just came out as the anti-vaxxer candidate.”
Williamson pushed back, saying McCain was misrepresenting her position.
“First of all, I am not anti-vaccine,” she said. “I think I misspoke in that one sentence, but I’d like to express myself. The fact that you have a problem — and this is what I’m talking about here. The fact that you have a problem with the revolving door policy by which Big Pharma and the CDC and the FDA are so cozy, so that millions of Americans who are not anti-science and are not anti-vaccine have some deep concerns.”
“The days of blind faith in Big Pharma are over,” Williamson added, “the days of blind faith in the idea that our government agencies are doing the proper oversight and proper advocacy for the American people, against at times of overreach against profit-making industries that are putting money before people, that is not an irrational or unreasonable thing.”
McCain asked if she’d changed her mind on the issue of mandatory vaccines, and Williamson insisted she hadn’t.
“I haven’t changed since yesterday,” she said. “I misspoke on that one sentence, but I will say this. If I were president of the United States, when I’m president of the United States, there will be a commission of scientists talking about — learning so that the American people see what’s going on with these vaccines who are not paid by Big Pharma.”
Ana Navarro asked whether the author and motivational speaker was running for president to boost her profile, and the panel briefly joked about her appearing on “Dancing With The Stars,” but co-host Sunny Hostin steered the conversation back to vaccinations.
“I don’t know that you have answered Meghan’s question,” Hostin said. “Do you support mandatory vaccinations?”
Williamson again tried to have it both ways.
“I understand that public safety must come first, but I also understand that we must have a balance between public safety and the issues of individual freedom,” Williamson said. “I do not trust the propaganda on either side.”
At this point, Joy Behar had heard enough.
“This kind of nebulous answer makes people paranoid,” Behar said. “Yes or no?”
Williamson stopped just short of answering the question before the commercial break.
“I would have to say that there are situations where there are absolute outbreaks,” she said, “and I understand there are epidemics where vaccines are life-saving. I support vaccines.”
Disney heiress who went undercover to Disneyland ‘livid’ at conditions and pay
Heiress Abigail Disney went to one of her family's resorts to see conditions for workers herself and was disgusted by what she saw.
In comments to Yahoo News podcast "Through Her Eyes," Disney described how she went to Disneyland in California undercover and found that workers at the resort were treated poorly—and underpaid.
"Every single one of these people I talked to were saying, 'I don't know how I can maintain this face of joy and warmth when I have to go home and forage for food in other people's garbage,'" said Disney.
Ex-Peru president wanted for corruption arrested in the US
Former Peruvian president Alejandro Toledo was arrested in the United States Tuesday to face extradition to his home country on corruption charges, authorities in the South American nation said.
The 73-year-old is suspected of involvement in the sprawling Odebrecht scandal in which the construction giant paid hundreds of millions of dollars in bribes throughout the continent to secure huge public works contracts.
The Peruvian attorney general's office announced on Twitter that Toledo "was arrested this morning for extradition, in the United States."
Toledo has been formally charged with receiving a $20 million payment from Odebrecht to grant it the tender to build the Interoceanic Highway that links Peru with Brazil.
Comic-Con mines past for future hits on 50th edition
A smorgasbord of sequels, prequels and reunions from "Terminator" to "Game of Thrones" awaits thousands of misty-eyed comic book geeks and sci-fi nerds descending on San Diego this week for the world's largest celebration of pop culture fandom.
The 50th edition of Comic-Con International will see 135,000 cosplayers, bloggers, movie executives and humble fans pile into a sweaty convention center for glimpses of their heroes, in town to promote the next mega-hit films, TV shows and comic books.
This anniversary edition promises to be more nostalgia-laden than most -- among those expected to appear are Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton, who will soon reunite on screen for the first time since 1991's "Terminator 2" for Paramount's killer cyborg sequel "Dark Fate."