Republican Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky is one of former President Donald Trump's most vocal defenders in Congress, especially in regards to Trump's handling of the pandemic that's killed over 600 thousand Americans.
As a result, Paul has frequently found himself at odds with medical experts like National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases director Dr. Anthony Fauci, and he's repeatedly railed against any and all efforts to regain control of the virus' spread—measures like mask mandates, vaccine outreach, and temporary shutdowns.
Recently, yet another bogus treatment and preventative "treatment" for the virus is making the rounds: ivermectin, the active ingredient in animal anti-parasite medications like horse dewormer.
While ivermectin has been prescribed as a coronavirus treatment in countries with limited access to vaccines and other treatments, the data on its effectiveness is inconclusive at best.
Nevertheless, claims of ivermectin's use in treating the virus were amplified through right-wing media outlets like Fox News, and some Americans have taken to administering it themselves. In Mississippi, one of the states hardest hit by the virus, at least 70 percent of recent calls to the state's poison control center were due to ivermectin-related illnesses.
Health officials at the state and federal levels have warned Americans not to take the drug, citing the dangers and unproven effectiveness.
Rand Paul, however, says fears surrounding ivermectin aren't due to safety concerns, but of hatred for Trump.
The Cincinatti Enquirer reported that Paul said at a recent town hall event:
"The hatred for Trump deranged these people so much that they're unwilling to objectively study [ivermectin]. So someone like me that's in the middle on it, I can't tell you because they will not study ivermectin. They will not study hydroxychloroquine without the taint of their hatred for Donald Trump."
In reality, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cited multiple studies to explain its reasoning for opposing ivermectin prescriptions for COVID-19 patients. Another bogus drug, pushed by former President Trump, was hydroxychloroquine which was routinely studied by government agencies like the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which concluded it to be ineffective.
The comments from Paul were out of touch with reality, and people soon called him out.
Ivermectin doesn’t work. Hydroxychloroquine doesn’t work. Bleach definitely is a very bad idea. What works are vacc… https://t.co/EwV1pRfXaM— Jonathan Reiner (@Jonathan Reiner) 1630336305.0
Nah, that's not it. It's simply because ivermectin is crap in treating COVID in HUMANS! Even an eye doctor should s… https://t.co/V2BcTXlOyT— Björn Meyer (@Björn Meyer) 1630342951.0
and allegiance to tump is killing people. https://t.co/tR1b2mAnhA— I have no use for religion (@I have no use for religion) 1630344453.0
Nah … I think it’s the fact that we have at least 3 vaccines that work … https://t.co/YM7AoOwVOZ— Brandon Richards (@Brandon Richards) 1630337427.0
Their narrative is that every institution in society--ultimately, every person--outside of Donald Trump's political… https://t.co/nqfXDfX2uf— Andy Craig (@Andy Craig) 1630335053.0
This is infuriating. It has been studied and it continues to be studied in multiple places. He knows that; he has t… https://t.co/PpgfpvlKeh— Jon Becker (@Jon Becker) 1630335567.0
Many proceeded to roast the Senator.
In Rand Paul’s defense, Ivermectin would work on him because it’s meant to treat a horse’s ass https://t.co/Va9mgBOqXk— Jess Dweck (@Jess Dweck) 1630343434.0
So @RandPaul is telling us 2 things. (1) He's unfit to be called Doctor and needs his license revoked, and (2) he's… https://t.co/BpBlvFcFrp— KMG365 ☕ 🥀 🐝 (@KMG365 ☕ 🥀 🐝) 1630346920.0
Idk about y’all but I prefer my infectious disease advice to come from an infectious disease expert… not some washe… https://t.co/BDSBMcJ3O8— Victoria Guillemard (@Victoria Guillemard) 1630345204.0
Though suggesting the promise of ivermectin, Paul continues to sow skepticism of vaccines.