Search This Blog

Monday, August 2, 2021

Vaccine Attitudes

In The Politics of Autism, I analyze the discredited notion that vaccines cause autism. This bogus idea can hurt people by allowing diseases to spread  And among those diseases could be COVID-19.

Antivaxxers are sometimes violent, often abusive, and always wrong

Half of COVID vaccine rejectors think that vaccines in general cause autism.  

UnfortunatelyRepublican politicians and conservative media figures are increasingly joining up with the anti-vaxxers.

Excerpt: The release from Monmouth:

“I think Americans acknowledge that the CDC and other health agencies have to deal with a lot of uncertainty. Still, it is tough for the average person to understand the flip from masks being optional to being necessary again. The messaging has not been clear,” said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute.


Just under half (48%) of Americans are at least somewhat concerned about catching one of the new coronavirus variants. Interestingly, those who have received at least one vaccine dose (57%) are somewhat more likely to be worried about catching one of the new variants than those who are unvaccinated and either ready to get the shot or are waiting a little longer to see how it goes (47%). On the other hand, extremely few (16%) of those who remain vehemently opposed to getting the vaccine have any concern about catching one of the new variants.

“Many, if not most, anti-vaxxers believe Covid is a hoax or they are unlikely to get infected. Which means there may be very little that can be done at this point to change their minds,” said Murray.

Currently, 68% report receiving at least one dose of Covid vaccine – which is in line with current CDC reports – while 2% will get it as soon as possible and 9% remain hesitant, but persuadable.

However, 17% say they remain opposed to getting the vaccine at all. Among those who admit they will not get the vaccine if they can avoid it, 70% either identify with or lean toward the Republican Party while just 6% align with the Democrats. Among those who are planning to get the vaccine or are persuadable, 45% are Republicans or lean toward that party and 40% are Democrats or Democratic leaners. Among those who have already received the vaccine, 32% fall on the Republican side of the political divide and 59% are on the Democratic side.

The 17% who are opposed to the getting vaccine look slightly lower than past results (which ranged 21% to 24%) but there is an important caveat. Another 4% of those polled did not answer this question (which is up slightly from past polls). As in prior polls, the partisan profile of this “don’t know” group looks extremely similar to the anti-vax group. The anti-vax and non-response groups together form a combined 21% of the public, which is similar to the number recorded in polls in April and June (23%).

“This could be a data blip, but it’s possible that more anti-vaxxers refuse to admit their position publicly now that leaders in their own party are pointing the finger at them for the recent surge. However, it is not clear that calling them out has moved many, if any, of them from their vehement anti-vax stance,” said Murray. He added, “On the other hand, we are starting to here anecdotal reports of some folks who were opposed to the vaccine getting it on the sly. Perhaps they are worried it will undercut their credibility in the partisan tribe if they admit it. The fact that we have to consider these possibilities is a reflection of how much our political discourse has deteriorated.”


The Monmouth University Poll was conducted by telephone from July 21 to 26, 2021 with 804 adults in the United States. The question results in this release have a margin of error of +/- 3.5 percentage points. The poll was conducted by the Monmouth University Polling Institute in West Long Branch, NJ.