Sep 6, 2020 - Health

Kamala Harris says she "would not trust" Trump on coronavirus vaccine

Democratic Vice Presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA.), delivers remarks during a campaign event on August 27, 2020 in Washington, DC.
Sen. Kamala Harris during a campaign event on Aug. 27. Photo: Michael A. McCoy/Getty Images

Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris told CNN in an interview airing Sunday she "would not trust" President Trump "about the efficacy and the reliability" of a coronavirus vaccine if approved before November's election.

Driving the news: The CDC has requested governors "urgently" speed up their permit applications so vaccine distribution sites are operational by early November. The Trump administration has this week pushed back on questions of political interference in vaccine development.

  • White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said Thursday, "No one is pressuring the FDA to do anything."

What she's saying: "It would have to be a credible source of information that talks about the efficacy and the reliability of whatever he's talking about," Harris said in her "State of the Union" interview, expressing concern that health officials might not have final approval on a vaccine.

  • "If past is prologue that they will not," she added.
  • "They’ll be muzzled, they’ll be suppressed, they will be sidelined because he’s looking at an election coming up in less than 60 days, and he’s grasping for whatever he can get to pretend that he’s been a leader on this issue when he’s not."

Of note: NIAID director Anthony Fauci told CNN on Thursday that if he saw interference, he would "call it out."

  • Fauci added that he's sure a vaccine "would not be approved for the American public unless it was indeed both safe and effective."

Go deeper: The scramble to prepare for a coronavirus vaccine

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