Fact check: Ted Cruz explodes CDC advice on travel and mask use for vaccinated

The statement: ‘This is a bizarre, insane, totalitarian cult. It is not about vaccines or protecting the lives of people – it is rather a deep anti-science and is only focused on the absolute (government) control of every aspect of our lives. ‘- Ted Cruz, Republican senator, on Twitter.

Cruz made the statement in response to guidelines urging those vaccinated for COVID-19 to avoid travel and continue to wear masks.

PolitiFact rating: Pants on Fire! The emerging vaccines were each placed through months of clinical trials that tested for their effectiveness in preventing disease. Its effectiveness in preventing transmission was not part of the trials and is not yet known.


Cruz specifically responded to dr. Vin Gupta, a physician in lung and intensive care units who appeared on MSNBC to warn vaccine recipients against the failure of the types of preventative measures that public health experts have been emphasizing all year.

‘This is one of the misconceptions here: just because you are vaccinated with a second dose does not mean that you have to participate in things like traveling in the midst of an out-of-control pandemic or that you are free from masks not. “Gupta told Chuck Todd, MSNBC. “Everything is still applicable until we all get the two-dose treatment, and we do not think it will happen in June or July.”

Many unknowns surround the COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna. It is unclear, for example, whether vaccinations strictly protect infected people from serious diseases, or if it also prevents people from transmitting the disease, Gupta said.

“Do not lower your guard just because you have been vaccinated,” he said. “You may be infected by the virus and pass it on to others.”

The remark was enough to look at Cruz, who had previously been criticized for wearing masks and other measures to spread COVID-19. But is that guidance really ‘anti-scientific’, as he calls it?

“I think [Cruz] speaks beyond his knowledge, ”says dr. Jaquelin Dudley, Professor of Molecular Biosciences and Co-Director of the LaMontagne Center for Infectious Diseases at the University of Texas.

Cruz’s office did not respond to requests for clarity on exactly what the senator meant by “anti-science.”

But the guidance emphasized by Gupta is the same messages that came from the very top tier of the American coronavirus response device. On December 14, dr. Anthony Fauci, President Donald Trump’s leading adviser on the coronavirus crisis, spoke in front of an online audience and gave the same advice.

‘It’s not going to be like turning on and off a light switch. It’s not going to be overnight. It’s going to be gradual. “I do not believe we will be able to throw away the masks and forget for a while about physical separation and congregational environment, probably until we drop and early next winter, but I think we can do it,” he said. said.

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PolitiFact is a fact checking project to help you locate facts in politics. Truth O-meter ratings are determined by a panel of three editors. The burden of proof is on the speaker, and PolitiFact judges statements based on the information known at the time the statement was made.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also recommends that there is not enough information to say whether or when CDC will stop recommending that people wear masks and avoid close contact with others. will respond to vaccines.

According to Dr. Jonathan Temte of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, the clinical trials of the vaccine only looked at how the vaccine disease occurs. These trials did not provide any information on the transmission, meaning that vaccinated people could still carry and spread the virus.

This is one of the primary sources of uncertainty surrounding the vaccine: whether vaccinated people can be contagious. If the vaccinations are protected only against disease and not transmissions, the herd immunity becomes more difficult through vaccination, according to the medical journal The Lancet.

“Pfizer and Moderna jointly project that by 2020 there will be enough vaccines for 35 million individuals, and perhaps up to 1 billion by 2021,” The Lancet wrote. “As a result, many millions of people at high risk for disease will not be vaccinated soon, necessitating the continued use of non-pharmaceutical interventions.”

Furthermore, it is also unknown how long immunity in a vaccinated person will last, or how effective vaccination will be in older people or people with underlying disease conditions.