Press Secretary Jen Psaki and Fox News reporter Peter Doocy’s exchanges at press conferences have become legendary, with him throwing out attempted ‘gotcha’ questions and her always being ready with a response that’s typically concise, clear, and somewhat cutting.
This time, it was about mandates requiring police officers to be vaccinated. According to Bloomberg, over a third — about 36% actually — of Chicago police officers have failed to comply with a mandate to disclose their vaccination status. Of those who did disclose, around one in every six say they have not been fully vaccinated (1,333 unvaccinated or only partially vaccinated; 6,894 fully vaccinated). Those who refuse to comply could be facing unpaid leave.
In a press conference, Peter Doocy asked Jen Psaki if the administration is concerned that this will diminish police forces across the country, as mandates are put in place and officers refuse to comply.
Fox News' Peter Doocy asks if the White House is concerned about police leaving the force over vaccine mandates:
Press Sec. Jen Psaki: "What was the #1 cause of death among police officers last year? Do you know?"
Psaki: "COVID-19." pic.twitter.com/Y1SM4B64lj
— The Recount (@therecount) October 19, 2021
Psaki was ready, though, with another piece of relevant information about vaccine mandates, COVID-19, and police:
What was the #1 cause of death among police officers last year? Do you know? COVID-19.
In fact, the Officer Down Memorial Page lists COVID-19 as the biggest killer of police officers in both 2020 and 2021, listing hundreds of names of officers who contracted the virus in the line of duty and didn’t survive it. For 2020, the National Sheriff’s Association lists nearly three times as many deaths confirmed as by COVID-19 as by either gunfire or traffic incidents.
While non-compliance with vaccine mandates may diminish forces, the virus is already doing so — and vaccinated officers are also less likely to pass the virus on to members of the public.
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Steph Bazzle reports on social issues and religion for Hill Reporter. She focuses on stories that speak to everyone's right to practice what they believe in and receive the support of their communities and government officials. You can reach her at Steph@HillReporter.com