Gov. Brian Kemp criticized the Biden administration on Thursday for what he is calling “mixed messaging” over vaccines and masks.
At the same time, he’s repeating his belief that mask mandates don’t work.
Two state Democratic lawmakers, both touched by COVID-19, told Channel 2′s Richard Elliot that they agree with the governor that everyone needs to get a vaccine, but they disagree over masks.
The cities of Atlanta and Savannah now have mask mandates, but Kemp insists mask mandates don’t work.
Minutes after Kemp swore in Vedra Colvin as Georgia’s newest Supreme Court justice Thursday, he came out and talked about the pandemic insisting everyone get the vaccine, especially in the face of a spike in cases due primarily to the Delta variant.
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“Listen, the one message I will give to Georgians is 95% of the population of COVID patients in our hospitals have not been vaccinated,” Kemp said.
But the governor rejected a return to mask mandates by Atlanta and Savannah and accused the Biden administration of causing confusion through what he calls “mixed messaging.”
“Again, I don’t think mask mandates work. We had the President of the United States telling all Americans, begging them to get your vaccine, take your mask off. Now, we know that guidance is different. What does that tell people? Mixed messages from the government,” Kemp said.
Democratic state Sen. Donzella James spent four months in the hospital because of COVID-19.
“I want to protect not only myself, but all the people around me,” James said.
Democratic state Rep. Patty Bentley lost her husband to COVID-19.
She defended mask mandates and supports not only vaccine mandates for federal employees but other places as well. It’s the only way, she says, to stop the pandemic.
“I believe so. I believe yes. It should be mandatory to be vaccinated. That’s my belief,” Bentley said.
The governor called on the FDA to remove the emergency use authorization from the vaccines and go ahead and fully authorize them.
That, he thinks, will help reduce some of the hesitancy among the unvaccinated.
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