There are some things beyond “little 12-year old girls,” “government injections” and allegations of crony capitalism.
Perry has already said he had it wrong trying to mandate Gardasil vaccinations without a legislative debate. But it’s a bit more complicated than cute political narratives and attention-grabbing debate attacks.
The “I’m a mom, so I’m untouchable” thing Bachmann pulled was irritating. The “I met somebody off stage who just told me her 12-year old kid became retarded because of Gardasil” thing she pulled after the debate was worse – you can’t become retarded from Gardasil; that happens at a far earlier stage than 12 years old. You could maybe get brain damage from it, but there sure isn’t a lot of evidence it causes brain damage. And strangely enough, Bachmann hasn’t quite explained why she didn’t express the same outrage about the Hepatitis-B vaccine mandate in Minnesota which didn’t have an opt-out at all.
But if Bachmann wants to throw out anecdotes, Perry can do that as well. Like, for example, this one…
The Gardasil controversy is vastly overblown. Perry’s vaccination order was never actually implemented, and it had an opt-out. He loses to Romney due to that? Really? A never-implemented vaccination order, compared to a fully-implemented Romneycare? Seems like Republicans will pick the lesser of evils on that one.
But in any event, there is at least some personal reason behind why Perry wanted to do something about HPV and cervical cancer. Call it a moment of weakness if you want. But he’s a bit more sympathetic than the half-crazed woman offering kooky anti-vaccine paranoia.
And by the way, Sarah Palin really ought to shut the hell up about Gardasil, since her policy as Alaska’s governor is hardly defensible by the standard she attempts to impose on Perry.
Thanks to Ace Of Spades, who has done outstanding work on the Gardasil controversy and the ridiculous hype the attention-junkies in the 2012 field have given it.