‘The stupidity is remarkable’: Ex-White House doctor slammed for pushing a new COVID conspiracy theory
In response to the discovery of the Omicron variant — a new worrying strain of COVID-19 — President Joe Biden has temporarily banned travel to the U.S. from South Africa and some of its neighboring countries. The World Health Organization has labeled it a "variant concern," based on preliminary but still uncertain indications that it may have increased transmissibility and may be able to at least partially evade immunity induced by vaccination or prior infection.
Rep. Ronny Jackson of Texas, meanwhile, pushed a false conspiracy theory claiming that Democrats are using Omicron to “cheat” in the 2022 midterms.
The far-right MAGA Republican tweeted:
Here comes the MEV - the Midterm Election Variant! They NEED a reason to push unsolicited nationwide mail-in ballots. Democrats will do anything to CHEAT during an election - but we're not going to let them!— Ronny Jackson (@Ronny Jackson) 1638046070
Jackson has been drawing criticism from both the left and the right for politicizing the Omicron variant. Some of the most scathing criticism has come from Joe Scarborough, the former GOP congressman and Never Trump conservative who hosts “Morning Joe” on MSNBC.
Pointing out that Morocco has also banned incoming visitors from South Africa, Scarborough told his MSNBC colleague Jonathan Lemire, “The stupidity is remarkable. I guess you have to lay the stupidity at the feet of the people who actually would believe the stupid lies, because it’s all out there. Do people in Texas, in Ronny Jackson’s district, really believe that Moroccans are willing to let their government’s policy be impacted to help somebody win an election in Virginia a year from now? Again, it’s just absolute complete stupidity.”
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