On the July 9 edition of Newsmax’s Rob Schmitt Tonight, host Rob Schmitt said vaccines go “against nature” and some diseases are “supposed to wipe out a certain amount of people.” Schmitt was speaking to guest Dr. Peter McCullough about the COVID-19 vaccines, and his comment drew widespread condemnation.
After Media Matters flagged this comment, Newsmax sent us a statement that read:
Newsmax as a network strongly supports President Biden’s efforts to widely distribute the COVID vaccine. It is important for the safety of all and especially those at high risk, such as the elderly. Medical professionals who have appeared on Newsmax have strongly encouraged Americans to get the vaccine. From time to time a guest or host may not be as supportive of these efforts, however they do not reflect the position of Newsmax.
But Schmitt’s comment was not an isolated occurrence; it was part of a broad Newsmax campaign to dissuade people from taking the COVID-19 vaccination. At least two hosts, including Schmitt, have publicly said on air that they have not taken the COVID-19 vaccine. And they’re not the only ones on the network casting doubt.
On July 12, Cortes and Pellegrino host Steve Cortes condemned potential vaccine mandates in the armed services. He went on to speculate that the vaccines were being used as a “filter to cull the military ranks of people who might resist the brass’s insistence that the military prioritize political correctness over martial lethality.”
On July 12, Wake Up America host Rob Finnerty warned of a “socialist Democratic gestapo that could be going door-to-door in white coats to vaccinate people.” (This comment came in response to a statement President Joe Biden made about trying to increase vaccination rates, which conservative media have been relentlessly fearmongering over.)
On July 12, a guest on National Report said the COVID-19 vaccination is just another way for Democrats to “control your kids from the cradle to the grave.”
On July 10, Diamond and Silk said on their show that they had “concerns” and “questions” about the COVID-19 vaccination and warned of forced vaccination. Silk said, “I wonder will they be wearing brown shirts and arm bands,” alluding to the Nazis during the Third Reich. Diamond and Silk joined Newsmax after being ousted from Fox News in 2020 for pushing deranged COVD-19 conspiracy theories, including that 5G towers were increasing infection rates.
On July 9, Schmitt said not getting vaccinated is a reasonable choice for many Americans: “As far as vaccines go, there’s likely plenty to question and there’s plenty that science might not know.”
On July 8, John Bachman Now host John Bachman called COVID-19 vaccinations an “experimental drug trial” and said that no one should be forced to comply.
On July 8, John Bacham Now guest Dave Rubin said a “healthy skepticism” of the COVID-19 vaccines is reasonable and it is everyone’s “duty” to question their efficacy.
On July 7, Wake Up America guest Hogan Gidley said, “I completely understand how there are a large number of Americans” who don’t trust the vaccine.
On July 7, Newsmax contributor Eric Bolling said there were many unanswered questions about the COVID-19 vaccination and its side effects.