The Corner

Health Care

New Republican Congressman Supports Vaccine/Autism Paranoia

Good grief. Mark Green, a newly elected Republican to the House of Representatives from Tennessee, has put his foot in it before even being sworn in by supporting the “vaccines cause autism” paranoia. From the Tennessean story:

His remarks came in response to an audience question at a town hall meeting in Franklin from a woman identifying herself as the parent of a young adult with autism. The woman was concerned about possible cuts to Medicaid funding.

“Let me say this about autism,” Green said. “I have committed to people in my community, up in Montgomery County, to stand on the CDC’s desk and get the real data on vaccines. Because there is some concern that the rise in autism is the result of the preservatives that are in our vaccines.

Making this worse, Green is a physician — which could convince some wavering parents to not vaccinate their children, putting their and others’ kids at risk. It is worth noting in this regard that measles is on the rise due, at least in part, to fewer parents vaccinating their children.

Green also engaged in a bit of conspiracy theorizing:

At the town hall, Green emphasized that he would make it a priority to “stand against” what he believes may be the CDC withholding information on vaccine research.

“But it appears some of that data has been, honestly, maybe fraudulently managed,” Green said. “So we’ve got to go up there and stand against that and make sure we get that fixed, that issue addressed.”

In a clarifying statement, Green said he relied on the statement of another Republican congressman!

In a statement Wednesday to USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee, Green elaborated that he was referring to discussions in the House in recent years, such as a concern raised in 2015 by Rep. Bill Posey, R-Florida, that the CDC covered up a possible link between autism and childhood vaccines.

Another congressman’s dumb statement does not even begin to justify charges of fraudulent management in the CDC.

This whole autism thing got started because of a debunked and fraudulent now-retracted study published years ago in The Lancet. How fake was the study? The author lost his medical license over the thing.

Talk about adding fuel to the “anti-science” charge often made against Republicans! What an inauspicious beginning as a Member of the House.

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