Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., on Wednesday defended the right not to get vaccinated against COVID-19, though he stressed that "people should get vaccinated" as delta variant case numbers rise in his home state.
Rubio said on CBS "This Morning" that "at the end of the day, it’s up to people to make that decision," whether to get vaccinated.
He added that "the government, in a free society such as ours, there’s only so much that they can do. They can provide information. We can debunk things that aren’t true. We can provide access. It’s ultimately up to people individually to make that decision."
When asked about recent polling showing that almost one-third of Republicans refuse to get vaccinated against COVID-19, Rubio said, "I don’t think the skepticism is just among Republicans. I see all kinds of voices that I don’t even think are ideological. People decided they wanted to believe something they read somewhere."
Rubio went on to say that "there are also communities, some African American and Hispanic communities in Florida where there’s a high hesitancy to get the vaccine as well for a whole variety of reasons.
"It’s really not a partisan issue. I don’t care what the polling says," he said. "At the end of the day, the vaccine is the vaccine. It’s a human thing and you either take it, or you don’t. There are some people who don’t want to be vaccinated, and you won’t convince them. I have family members; I have friends that I’ve known for a long time. Smart, educated people who just refuse to do it."
Rubio did note that "people should get vaccinated. The government’s been telling people for a long time that they shouldn’t smoke, that it causes cancer and heart disease and people decide to do it. The numbers have come down, but people still do it."
He added, "They tell us to watch what we eat. If you’re overweight, you can develop diabetes and heart disease, but it still happens. And my whole point here is that I think everyone who wants — everyone should be vaccinated. There’s no reason not to be vaccinated. I’m vaccinated. My family’s vaccinated. People shouldn’t listen to the people that tell them not to. All these things out there that are being said are just not accurate."
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