Presidential Candidate Carly Fiorina Says Vaccinating Is Parents' Choice
byEricka SouterAug 17, 2015
There are certain topics sure to spark fiery debate among
parents. High on that list is whether they should be required to vaccinate
their kids. Opponents fear the shots can potentially create more health hazards
than benefits. On the other side, people worry non-inoculated children will cause
a resurgence in nearly eradicated diseases like polio, whooping cough or mumps.
Now the issue has made its way into the race for
the White House. During a recent speech in Iowa, Republican candidate Carly Fiorina
said that vaccinations are "always a parent's choice." It's a stance that is
getting the underdog a great deal of attention. Unlike many of the other
contenders, Fiorina doesn't have a strong political pedigree. A former business executive, she is now the
chair of the non-profit philanthropic organization Good360, which helps
companies donate excessive product and merchandise to charities instead of
tossing it in a landfill.
Though, Fiorina isn't exactly anti-vax. She went on to say
that she believes schools should also have the right to refuse to admit
children who have not been vaccinated. "When you have highly communicable
diseases where you have a vaccine that's proven, like measles or mumps, then I
think a parent can make that choice," she said. "But then I think a school
district is well within their rights to say, 'I'm sorry, your child cannot
then attend public school' … so a parent has to make that trade-off."
for what she calls "more esoteric immunizations" (presumably like the shot
against the human papillomavirus), she resolutely believes a school district
shouldn't be able to ban a child.
So far, New Jersey Governor Chris
Christie is the only other candidate who has made major headlines on the issue.
When questioned on his stance last February, he said "parents need to have
some measure of choice in things as well, so that's the balance that the
government has to decide."
Months later, however, he changed his
opinion, stating, "I think that would be the wrong step for the public health
of our country."