Republicans and their media allies were harshly criticized on Monday for harming America's vaccination efforts.
"What used to be the conservative movement in this country is becoming a death cult. The measure of its power is less in ballots cast than in how many people die needlessly in service of this twisted worldview," Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson wrote. "This reality was on view over the weekend in Dallas at the Conservative Political Action Conference, where attendees cheered when Alex Berenson, who has made himself a Fox News folk hero for spreading misinformation about covid-19 vaccines, crowed about the fact that fewer Americans were getting their shots than public health officials had hoped."
Berenson was invited to speak at CPAC after being labeled "The Pandemic's Wrongest Man" by The Atlantic.
"It's horrifying," Dr. Tony Fauci said on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday. "I mean, they are cheering about someone saying that it's a good thing for people not to try and save their lives. … Everybody starts screaming and clapping. I just don't get that. I mean, and I don't think that anybody who is thinking clearly can get that."
Robinson noted coronavirus cases are rising in forty-two states.
"Fox News has openly encouraged skepticism about vaccination — even though the network's owner, Rupert Murdoch, received his first vaccine dose way back in December. Prime-time hosts Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham have been relentless in encouraging viewers to distrust the vaccines, and both had conniption fits about a Biden administration idea to have health workers and volunteers go door-to-door to encourage people to get vaccinated," he noted.
Robinson argued that Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) "and other GOP leaders need to forcefully explain to their constituents that, by refusing to get vaccinated, they're owning no one except themselves. The measure of devotion to a belief might be how much a worshiper is willing to sacrifice to it, but offering up one's loved ones, one's livelihood and even one's own health to a god this stupid is deranged."
Read the full column.