NBC “Today” show host Matt Lauer on Tuesday criticized the New York Times for suggesting that vaccination poses a unique political challenge to the GOP.
Speaking to “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd, Lauer brought up a Times article titled “Measles Outbreak Proves Delicate Issue to G.O.P. Field.”
Lauer noted one paragraph in particular:
The vaccination controversy is a twist on an old problem for the Republican Party: how to approach matters that have largely been settled among scientists but are not widely accepted by conservatives.
Describing the newspaper as “liberal,” Lauer said, “Let’s make it clear: this does not break down neatly between the right and the left. There are pockets of liberal affluent American where parents don’t want their kids vaccinated.”
“What this goes down to is, we’ve been politicizing science now in the last decade in a lot of ways,” Todd said.
Referring to a tweet from Hillary Clinton that read “The science is clear: The earth is round, the sky is blue, and #vaccineswork,” Todd said: “I think that came across as a little bit condescending.”
The issue of vaccines catapulted to the forefront of the national discussion on Monday after New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), both potential GOP presidential contenders, said that parents should have some choice in whether to vaccinate children. That led to an avalanche of commentary from other possible candidates.
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