The head of the National Institutes of Health on Sunday suggested he would support a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for some migrants crossing the border illegally.
In an interview on “Fox News Sunday,” NIH director Dr. Francis Collins asserted migrants are already being offered vaccines if they arrive from areas where there’s a high incidence of COVID infection.
“I know that vaccines are being offered to people in that situation,” he said, but added as to why they’re not mandated, “that’s a question for someone else.”
“I would say whether they are coming across the border or they are somewhere else in the world, yes. As a public health person, I want everybody to be vaccinated — and if a mandate would help with that, let’s do it.”
President Joe Biden has come under fire from the GOP for allowing unvaccinated migrants into the country after they’ve illegally crossed the southern border, and has gotten calls to shut the border for health reasons since unvaccinated migrants “pose a national danger.”
Last month, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton blamed spiking COVID-19 numbers in the state to the record migrant surge at the border.
“There’s no doubt our [COVID-19] numbers are going up because of the border and what’s going on down there,” he said. “I talked to Dallas police officers who told me that they’ve seen buses come in at night and be completely emptied and the people just disappear.”