The measles outbreak traced to Disneyland and which is being spread around the country by kids whose parents have refused to get them vaccinated is becoming politicized. Yesterday Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) weighed in on the question of whether kids should be vaccinated on the Laura Ingraham radio show and CNBC. In both cases, the senator argued that vaccination should be the choice of parents.
On CNBC Paul did say that he thinks "vaccines are one of the biggest medical breakthroughs that we've had" and that "public awareness of how good vaccines are for kids and how they are good for public health is a great idea." So far, so good.
However, the senator seemed to lend credence to the thoroughly discredited claims that vaccinations are associated with autism. From CNBC:
I've heard of many tragic cases of walking, talking normal children who wound up with profound mental disorders after vaccines.
Let's hope that the senator misspoke and will soon clarify his remarks so as to not inadvertently mislead the public with respect to the safety of vaccines.
For more background, see Reason's debate "Should Vaccines Be Mandatory?" and my recent post "The Voluntarily Unvaccinated Are Harming Other People in California Measles Outbreak."