CNN anchor Jake Tapper on Friday criticized President Joe Biden for being too mean to unvaccinated Americans, blasting the president’s allegedly “scolding tone” during the announcement of his new six-prong plan to combat the surging COVID-19 pandemic.
On Thursday, the president revealed sweeping vaccine rules attempting to push the large minority of Americans who remain unvaccinated to finally get the shot. Besides requiring all federal employees to be vaccinated within 75 days, Biden also announced new rules requiring a sizable number of private-sector employees to either be vaccinated or produce weekly negative COVID-19 test results.
During his speech, the president also expressed frustration with the tens of millions of Americans who have refused to get vaccinated, essentially blaming them for a prolonged pandemic.
“What more is there to wait for? What more do you need to see? We’ve made vaccinations free, safe, and convenient,” Biden exclaimed. “The vaccine is FDA approved. Over 200 million Americans have gotten at least one shot. We’ve been patient but our patience is wearing thin and your refusal has cost all of us. So, please, do the right thing.”
During a Friday morning appearance on CNN’s New Day, Tapper first asserted that there are “legitimate constitutional questions” surrounding the president’s new coronavirus rules before arguing that Biden has moved from “persuasion to coercion.”
The CNN anchor lamented: “He took on a scolding tone talking to the people who are unvaccinated, talking about how, you know, people’s patience is running out.”
After noting that Republicans have predictably blasted Biden’s mandates in an appeal to their base, Tapper suggested the president be more cognizant of what he’s up against: “This is part of the American public, this is part of the ethos in this country,” the CNN anchor said. “People don’t want big government telling them what to do.”
Tapper further acknowledged the large market of Americans willing to accept “grifters” peddling “anti-science” disinformation, adding that he’s not “yet really seen the Biden administration talk or try to address this.” (The president asserted in July that social-media personalities pushing coronavirus misinformation are literally “killing people.”)
“I don’t think scolding is the approach,” Tapper ultimately declared. “There are these purveyors of misinformation out there, and they’re not just on the right. Robert Kennedy Jr. is one of the most notorious ones. And I haven’t seen the president or anyone say, look, people, like, he’s scolding the people that are being lied to as opposed to the liars.”
He continued: “Instead of saying there are a bunch of people trying to get your money, trying to get your attention, trying to get your votes, trying to get your views and clicks, instead of shaming the liars and trying to educate the people being lied to, he’s scolding the people being lied to.”
The veteran anchor concluded by comparing COVID-19 misinformation to former President Donald Trump’s “Big Lie” that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from him.
“And, again, as with the election lie, you can get mad at the people who believe the lies, but the villains are the liars,” Tapper said.