Pollster Frank Luntz conducted a focus group that highlighted how little GOP voters trust Dr. Anthony Fauci in comparison to their personal doctors when it comes to the coronavirus vaccine.
On Thursday, “Special Report” with Fox News host Bret Baier spoke with Luntz who explained that the focus group of 19 Trump voters from across the country expressed “real concern, doubt, if not distrust of Anthony Fauci and what he has to say.”
“I have tuned him out, frankly, I have no opinion anymore,” Doug from California stated. Others were far less kind and called Fauci a “liar,” a “puppet,” and a “flip-flopper.” They said he was “inconsistent” and “self-serving” as well.
“They’ve given up on him because he keeps changing the goalposts. He keeps changing his mind,” commented Luntz. “I don’t want to undercut Dr. Fauci’s credibility, but among Trump voters he has none.”
(Video Credit: Fox News)
Luntz’s revelations follow a confrontation earlier on Thursday between Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Dr. Fauci. The senator called out Fauci on masks and grilled him on why he thinks mandates are anything but “theater.”
Rand Paul's relentless mic-drop takedown of Fauci over masks and virtue 'theater' gets heated https://t.co/LW5gHWAPXm
— Bo Snerdley (@BoSnerdley) March 19, 2021
“What studies do you have that people who have had the vaccine or had infection are spreading the infection? If we’re not spreading the infection isn’t it just theater? You’ve had the vaccine and you’re wearing 2 masks isn’t that theater?” Paul asked the doctor during the session.
“You’ve been vaccinated and you parade around in two masks for show. You can’t get it again,” Paul adamantly stated. “There’s virtually 0% chance you’re going to get it and you’re telling people that have had the vaccine who have immunity — you’re defying everything we know about immunity by telling people to wear masks who have been vaccinated.”
“Here we go again with the theater, let’s get down to the facts,” Fauci heatedly replied. “When you talk about reinfection and you don’t keep in the concept of variants, that’s an entirely different ballgame. That’s a good reason for a mask,” he insisted.
Wearing a mask after having the vaccine is nothing but pure Theater. Fauci is invested in our submission. He is a liar.
— John Rich (@johnrich) March 19, 2021
Luntz declared that if skeptical voters are going to be swayed when it comes to taking the vaccine, “they need evidence other than Dr. Fauci, [whether that’s] their own doctor, their own health care provider, they’re more likely to trust [them] than anybody else.”
The response from the focus group was overwhelmingly negative concerning Fauci and not much better when it came to the vaccine itself. They called it “unproven”, “rushed,” “a miracle, albeit suspicious,” and “scary, not knowing the long-term side effects.” One respondent said he feared the vaccine more than the virus.
“The one group least likely to take this vaccine are Trump voters, particularly younger Trump voters,” Luntz noted. “And it’s going to take an appeal from the medical community, from the doctors themselves, face to face with their patients, giving the vaccines in the doctor’s office rather than these mass [vaccination] sites. That’s going to move people, and they’ve got to be moved if we’re going to get to herd immunity.”
Luntz pointed out it needs to be doctors in their offices administering the vaccine, not hubs such as pharmacies, dental, and veterinarian offices. Many also allegedly do not trust the military giving vaccines to individuals.
Presidents, past and present, had no effect on the respondents concerning the vaccine, according to Luntz.
He concluded, “Trump voters want to hear the science. They want to hear the medicine. They want to hear from doctors. They do not want to hear from previous presidents.”
Meanwhile, Fauci is warning of a possible fourth surge of the virus. “I’m concerned that if we pull back in our enthusiasm for the fact that vaccines are rolling out, and things look good, if we pull back prematurely, we may trigger another surge. And that would really set us back in all the things that we’re trying to do,” he told lawmakers on Thursday.
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