In a short two-minute span on Fox & Friends Wednesday morning, co-host Brian Kilmeade casually compared New York’s indoor vaccine mandate to Taliban rule while seemingly urging unvaccinated New Yorkers to get fake vaccine cards to circumvent the system.
At the same time, fellow host Ainsley Earhardt peddled false information about COVID-19 patients receiving monoclonal antibody treatments, claiming it was the same as “getting vaccinated.”
Noting that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott—who has been a fierce opponent of mask mandates and other coronavirus mitigation efforts—recently contracted COVID-19, the Fox & Friends crew pointed out that Abbott has been vaccinated, is currently experiencing no symptoms, and is reportedly taking Regeneron.
With Republicans suddenly embracing the drug company’s monoclonal antibody cocktail—which is typically administered as a one-time treatment to COVID-19 patients early on—amid a surging wave of hospitalizations in Florida and Texas, Earhardt then likened the post-infection treatment to vaccination.
“If you don’t get vaccinated and you go to the hospital, most of the time you are going to get Regeneron,” she declared. “But Regeneron are the antibodies, still basically getting vaccinated because they are sticking you with an antibody which is the virus.”
Kilmeade, who recently sniped at co-host Steve Doocy for touting vaccines because anchors shouldn’t be “recommending medical advice,” didn’t have a problem with Earhardt’s bogus medical claim. (The FDA says Regeneron is not a substitute for vaccination against COVID-19 and recommends all eligible people get vaccinated.)
The conversation then shifted to New York City’s new vaccine mandate for indoor venues, which will require residents 12 or older to present proof that they’ve received at least one shot when entering the city’s bars, restaurants, gyms, or entertainment venues. Kilmeade, meanwhile, seemingly gave a wink and nod to unvaccinated viewers that they can easily obtain fraudulent vaccine passes.
“Guess what they're doing in this terribly run city,” he groused. “They are deciding you can't go to plays, you can't go to movies, you can't go to bars, you can't go to restaurants, you can't go to gyms, you can't go to anything unless you have your vaccination card. Which takes a dollar to make a knockoff card.”
Starting in September, the city’s Department of Health will start issuing fines and penalties to indoor businesses and venues that don’t check vaccination status. The sheriff’s department could also start issuing fines, upwards of thousands of dollars, to anyone using fake vaccine passes.
After Doocy—who has been one of the most outspoken vaccine advocates on Fox—expressed support for NYC’s vaccine mandates because it will motivate more residents to get vaccinated, Kilmeade then compared the plight of unvaccinated New Yorkers to Americans who are desperately trying to flee Taliban-controlled Afghanistan amid the country’s collapse.
“What if you have the antibodies, and what if you can't get the vaccination?” Kilmeade exclaimed. “You have to shelter in place now, like an American in Afghanistan?”
While Kilmeade himself is vaccinated and Fox News’ parent company has implemented its own vaccine passport system for all employees working in offices, the Fox News star has repeatedly railed against the idea of governments or businesses recommending or mandating vaccines. In fact, as the Delta variant began to spread like wildfire last month, Kilmeade insisted it’s not the government’s job to “protect anybody.”