MSNBC's Joy Reid highlights the “epidemic of misinformation” seen in Fox's coverage of the COVID vaccination push

Video file

Citation From the July 19, 2021, edition of MSNBC's The Reid Out

JOY REID (HOST): Dr. Francis Collins, the Director of the National Institutes of Health, tells The Washington Post that America is in the midst of not one, but two pandemics, or epidemics. A biological epidemic caused by a terrible virus, and the other is an epidemic of misinformation.

On Friday, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the CDC, warned that this is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated. It should come as no surprise that many COVID cases are people who watch Fox News hosts, and who downplayed the pandemic. According to Media Matters, between June 28th and July 11th, Fox personalities and guests made a total of 216 claims undermining or downplaying vaccines. Here's just a taste of the steady and unrelenting stream of lies. 


REID: Wow. Their current argument is literally that people should have had the right to kill themselves, just to "own the libs." Thoughtful logic. But here's a nasty little secret. The corporate overlords over at Fox News have mandated vaccines for all of their employees who want to come to work. They've mandated vaccines for those who want to work there, and they've implemented even their own vaccine passport of sorts. 

All of this makes you wonder what the political advantage is of killing off supporters of Fox News, the GQP, and other right-wing outlets.


REID: Can I ask you this -- just from your point of view as a -- as a conservative? Why -- what is in it for Fox to kill their own viewers? What would they get out of killing their own people? I don't get it. 

TIM MILLER: This is bottom-up, Joy. It's a ratings thing. At the very start, Fox didn't like Trump, either. It's what the people watching demanded, right? And so, if you're going to give the people what they want, if there's a conspiratorial strain running through conservativism -- I think there is -- if there's this "don't tread on me" strain that obviously goes through conservatism, Fox, rather than doing a responsible thing, leaders, rather than being responsible and saying, "Okay, I understand your concerns about that, but here is X, Y and Z -- the facts. Here's the truth, here's why you have to get vaccinated," they're enabling it. Right? So, they're not thinking long-term about, is this person going to be alive to be in my ratings in 2040? They're thinking about the ratings today. And the high -- the person who's doing the best is the person who's driving the most disinformation, Tucker. 

REID: Who is vaccinated. He won't admit it, but they're all vaccinated. They're required to be vaccinated to work there. They are the strictest of all the cable companies in terms of making them get vaccinated.