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Facebook Misinformation Isn't Killing People, Joe Biden Is

AP Photo/Susan Walsh

On Friday, Joe Biden made the outlandish statement that COVID-19 misinformation is killing people.

“On COVID misinformation, what’s your message to platforms like Facebook?” a reporter asked Biden.

“They’re killing people,” Biden replied. “I mean, they’ll, really, look. The only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated. And they’re killing people.”

I think Biden is overcompensating here. He’s trying to blame social media for a problem he created. Last year, both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris raised doubts about the safety and efficacy of the vaccines we’d get from Operation Warp Speed. “As we enter the height of election season, President Trump should assure us all that the White House will respect the independent authority of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to decide, free from political pressure, if the vaccine is safe and effective,” Biden said in a statement in July.

A couple of months later, Kamala Harris also cast doubt on a potential vaccine for COVID-19. When asked by CNN’s Dana Bash whether she trusted the efficacy of the vaccine, Kamala Harris basically said she didn’t. “If past is prologue, then they will not. They’ll be muzzled, they’ll be suppressed, they will be sidelined,” Harris claimed, without evidence. “Because he’s looking at an election coming up in less than sixty days, and he’s grasping for whatever he can get to pretend that he’s been a leader on this issue when he’s not.”

The Biden campaign cared so much more about winning an election than saving the lives of Americans that they literally launched a preemptive disinformation campaign about any COVID vaccine that might get released before the election, rather than risk Trump getting any political benefit from delivering on his promise to get a vaccine approved before the end of the year.

Joe Biden’s months-long campaign against the vaccines had devastating results. A Morning Consult poll in September 2020 showed only 51 percent of Americans were willing to take the vaccine, a 21-point drop from April.

Biden eventually changed his tune… after the election.

But that wasn’t even the worst thing Biden did. In April 2021, six people out of 6.8 million who had received the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine experienced severe blood clotting. This less-than-one-in-a-million occurrence prompted the Biden administration to pause the administering of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. While governors slammed the decision, Dr. Fauci defended the decision.

“This decision was made by the CDC and the FDA and that’s one of the things that’s such a good thing about our system here, is that we’re ruled by the science, not by any other consideration, so the decision was really thoroughly made by the FDA and CDC,” Fauci said

But, according to science, you have a greater risk of dying from general anesthesia (1 in 200,000) than you have from getting severe blood clots from the Johnson & Johnson vaccine (1 in 1.2 million). So, the J&J pause was stupid, and as expected, trust in the Johnson & Johnson vaccine plummeted and never recovered. But distrust in the COVID vaccines wasn’t limited to the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

As the graph below shows, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine pause coincides with a sharp decline in vaccination doses administered—a decline that continued even after the Biden administration lifted the pause.

But, okay, Joe, Facebook is killing people.

The graph proves that the Biden administration’s decision to pause the J&J vaccine also resulted in Americans not trusting the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Some have suggested the decline was a natural result of people who really wanted to get vaccinated already having been vaccinated, but are we really supposed to believe that this decline beginning when the Biden administration implemented the J&J pause is just a coincidence? Of course not.

Nothing shared on Facebook could have the impact on vaccinations that the Johnson & Johnson pause did. As PJM’s Paula Bolyard noted, “Facebook already censors anything that goes against Dr. Fauci’s narrative—whether it’s covering for China, downplaying the effectiveness of ivermectin and HCQ, or raising doubts about the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine.”

So maybe Joe Biden should censor himself. Had he not spent months sowing the seeds of doubt about the safety of the vaccines in 2020 and had his administration not paused the rollout of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, vaccination rates would most certainly be higher right now.