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Obama, Bush, Clinton to publicly get coronavirus vaccine shot to quell public's safety concerns

"What I don't trust is getting Covid" – former President Barack Obama

Updated: December 3, 2020 - 2:04pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Amid public skepticism about the safety of the quickly-made coronavirus vaccines, former Presidents Obama, George W. Bush and Clinton have vowed to receive the vaccine publicly, once approved by the FDA. 

The goal is to promote confidence in the safeness of the vaccine, and the former presidents believe showing the public they will get the shot, or oral dose, with proof will help convince others to take it.

Recently, Bush reached out to Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx, members of the White House coronavirus task force, asking what he could do to help promote the vaccine, according to Bush Chief of Staff Freddy Ford.

"A few weeks ago President Bush asked me to let Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx know that, when the time is right, he wants to do what he can to help encourage his fellow citizens to get vaccinated," Ford told CNN. "First, the vaccines need to be deemed safe and administered to the priority populations. Then, President Bush will get in line for his, and will gladly do so on camera."

Clinton's press secretary also says he is willing to take the vaccine in public to help encourage the vaccination.

"President Clinton will definitely take a vaccine as soon as available to him, based on the priorities determined by public health officials. And he will do it in a public setting if it will help urge all Americans to do the same," spokesperson Angel Urena said.

In an podcast interview with Joe Madison set to release Thursday, Obama said if Fauci believes it's safe, he will take it, and is willing to do so on TV or filmed. 

"If Anthony Fauci tells me this vaccine is safe, and can vaccinate, you know, immunize you from getting Covid, absolutely, I'm going to take it," he said. "I may end up taking it on TV or having it filmed, just so that people know that I trust this science, and what I don't trust is getting Covid."

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