Vaccine hesitancy is splitting dangerously along partisan lines

When Gallup asked respondents whether they would agree to get vaccinated if the vaccine were available to them right now, the partisan gap stood at 40 points (91% for Democrats and 51% for Republicans) in their most recent poll.

We can’t be sure why exactly Republicans are now significantly less willing to get the vaccine, but remember Democrats have pretty much always said they were more concerned about Covid-19 than Republicans…

On the micro-level, Americans’ friendships (i.e. who we might most frequently be in close contact with) are highly dependent on politics. A 2020 Pew Research Center poll found that 59% of Trump supporters said a lot of their close friends voted for Trump, and 30% said some of their close friends did. Just 10% of Trump backers said few (8%) or none (2%) of their close friends did.

It’s fairly easy to see how this could lead to outbreaks where the virus can thrive. After all, we all saw how the Trump White House experienced a coronavirus outbreak during the early fall. It was during this period that Trump contracted it. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the White House held a “superspreader event” when Trump introduced now-Justice Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court.