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Monday, December 09, 2019

Fox News fearmongers about vaccine requirements

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters

If you watch Fox News coverage of the vaccine rollout over the last six months, there is one thing you know for certain: Fox hosts and personalities do not want businesses to require proof of vaccination, colloquially known as vaccine passports.

But now we have learned that Fox itself requires a vaccine passport, called a "Fox Clear Pass." Ryan Grim reported it on Monday morning, and Oliver Darcy further reported:

Fox employees, including those who work at Fox News, received an email, obtained by CNN Business, from the company's Human Resources department in early June that said Fox had "developed a secure, voluntary way for employees to self-attest their vaccination status."

The system allows for employees to self-report to Fox the dates their shots were administered and which vaccines were used.

The company has encouraged employees to report their status, telling them that "providing this information to FOX will assist the company with space planning and contact tracing."

Employees who report their status are allowed to bypass the otherwise required daily health screening, according to a follow-up email those who reported their vaccination status received.

"Thank you for providing FOX with your vaccination information," the email said. "You no longer are required to complete your daily health screening through WorkCare/WorkMatters."

The concept, which was first reported Monday by Ryan Grim on The Hill's morning streaming show, is known internally as "FOX Clear Pass."

While the "Fox Clear Pass" is voluntary for employees, and other companies have similar tools, it is still remarkable, given how vocal Fox's top talent has been in criticizing the concept of vaccine passports.

To say that condemnations of vaccine requirements have been ubiquitous on Fox News is an understatement. One Fox host likened such requirements to communist East Germany. Tucker Carlson called the requirements "medical Jim Crow" and agreed with Turning Point USA's Charlie Kirk that they are like apartheid. Laura Ingraham said requirements would usher in a "brave new world." Just this morning, Florida's attorney general said on Fox Business that vaccine requirements would lead to a "segregated society."

Now we know the deep hypocrisy behind the Fox-GOP feedback loop on vaccine requirements, but don't expect them to stop.

Research contributions from John Kerr.

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