Dude, she’s running. Telling the world that “grandmothers know best,” Hillary Clinton waited until well into the night before weighing in on the vaccine debate yesterday:
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) February 3, 2015
In 2008, Hillary wasn’t a grandmother — and her perspective on vaccines was somewhat different, too. Seven years ago, she and Barack Obama seemed perfectly willing to play a little footsie with the anti-vaxxers on the fringe Left for some progressive cred:
Democrats were quick to criticize those remarks, which come amid a measles outbreak that public health officials warn could spread because of the anti-vaccination movement.
During the 2008 campaign, though, Clinton addressed an anti-vaccine group and cited a study at the time that raised concerns about a link between autism and vaccines.
“I am committed to make investments to find the causes of autism, including possible environmental causes like vaccines,” Clinton told the group.
Then-candidate Obama also noted concerns about such a link in 2008.
The study in question, though, has since been discredited in the medical community.
The Hill refers to the Lancet study, which had a grand sample of 12 patients — hand-selected by the researcher in question, Andrew Wakefield. Wakefield also faked the data from those twelve cases, which came to light in 2009, but the study had long been in question prior to that. As early as the 1998 publication of the Wakefield study, researchers tried and failed to duplicate his results. By 2008, no one of any intellect should have given the pseudoscience of anti-vaxxers a second thought.
Yet at that time, the three leading candidates for President all paid their respects to them:
[T]he liberal blogosphere was in a tizzy several weeks ago about John McCain’s statement that there is “strong evidence” connecting the rise in autism rates to vaccines. But now it seems that both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have signaled some acceptance of the theory, as well. Yesterday at a campaign rally in Pennsylvania, Obama stated, “We’ve seen just a skyrocketing autism rate. Some people are suspicious that it’s connected to the vaccines. This person included. The science right now is inconclusive, but we have to research it.” And in response to a questionnaire distributed by the group Advocates for Children’s Health Affected by Mercury Poisoning, Clinton wrote, “I am committed to make investments to find the causes of autism, including possible environmental causes like vaccines.” Oddly, Obama’s answers to the questionnaire are actually more circumspect than Clinton’s, despite his public comments.
Now Hillary Clinton wants to manipulate the issue again for her political advantage. At least this time she’s getting the issue right. That’s an improvement on … just about every other issue on which she speaks.