Republican elected officials have repeatedly worked to undermine public trust in the lifesaving COVID-19 vaccines, which have proven safe and effective at minimizing the spread and severity of the virus that's killed over 800 thousand Americans.
Republican Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin has said he's "suspicious" of the effort to get everyone vaccinated, and dedicated an entire press conference to extremely rare adverse effects from the vaccines. Far-right Congresswoman and prominent conspiracy theorist Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia has repeatedly suggested the vaccines are dangerous, citing unverified reports from the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS).
But more moderate Republicans insist they're not against the vaccines, but against mandates that Americans get them administered.
That went out the window with a recently deleted tweet from the official account of Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee.
The account asked:
"If the booster shots work, why don't they work?"
It's true that, in the wake of the highly contagious omicron variant, there's been an uptick in breakthrough cases for fully vaccinated and boosted Americans, but the data still verifies the effectiveness of vaccines.
According to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, unvaccinated people are five times more likely to contract the virus than vaccinated people, and 14 times more likely to die.
What's more, thanks to rhetoric like the kind spewed from the GOP Judiciary account, there are stark political divisions among vaccination status. A Kaiser Family Foundation report from November of this year found that unvaccinated adults are three times more likely to lean Republican. This past October, data showed that counties where Trump won more than 60 percent of the 2020 vote have seen three times the COVID deaths of counties that voted for Biden by a similar margin.
The disinformation in the now-deleted tweet indicated the party's apathy for the health of its own voters.
Some attempted to fact-check the nonsense.
The account has yet to correct its disinformation.