Fauci: "There should be more" local vaccine mandates

“I have been of this opinion, and I remain of that opinion, that I do believe at the local level, Jake, there should be more mandates," Fauci told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union.” "There really should be. We're talking about life-and-death situation. We have lost 600,000 Americans already.”

The nation’s top infectious disease expert noted the disparity between vaccination rates in GOP vs. Democratic-led states, with surveys showing Democrats are far more likely to be vaccinated. Republican lawmakers in nearly 40 states have also recently backed bills to restrict Covid-19 vaccine mandates or vaccine passports, which public health experts, such as Fauci, have said will make it harder to end the pandemic.

"There's no reason not to get vaccinated. Why are we having red states and places in the South, that are very highly ideological in one way, not wanting to get vaccinations? Vaccinations have nothing to do with politics. It's a public health issue," he said.