On Tuesday, Judicial Watch obtained 249 pages of records from the Department of Health and Human Services, detailing a massive and extensive media campaign executed by the Biden administration with the aim of driving up acceptance of COVID-19 vaccines.
Tom Fitton, the president of Judicial Watch, stated, "These records show a disturbing and massive campaign by the Biden administration to propagandize and politicize the controversial COVID vaccine."
The Biden administration's campaign involved dispatching government-approved "messengers" to press the issue on popular podcasts. Black and Christian broadcasters were asked to run vaccination specials. Major brands and corporations, brought in as partners, were prompted to have their "talent" relay approved talking points. Hollywood guilds were brought on board to incorporate "vaccination messaging" into their scripts and shows.
Fitton added, "It seems as if the entire entertainment industry was an agent for the government!"
The COVID-19 Community Corps
After HHS failed to respond to an April 19, 2021, request for records pertaining to the "COVID-19 Community Corps" program it ran in league with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Judicial Watch filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit later that year, on August 31.
The documents Judicial Watch subsequently received exposed the tactics employed by the COVID-19 Community Corps.
HHS announced the launch of the CCC on April 1, 2021, characterizing it as a "nationwide, grassroots network of local voices people know and trust," tasked with encouraging Americans to get vaccinated.
The CCC's three stated goals were: to "Educate Americans on how they can protect themselves and slow the spread of COVID-19"; "Build trust in the vaccines so more American [sic] are ready to take them"; and "Increase vaccine uptake by educating Americans about how and where to get vaccinated."
Extra to deploying Vice President Kamala Harris — who had previously stated she would not take the vaccine — and other government spokesmen to promote the experimental new vaccines on black radio shows, the Biden administration went so far as to help script content for public consumption.
Among its promotion efforts, the CCC sought to:
- "Place a trusted messenger on the Joe Rogan Show and Barstool Sports to promote vaccination (work with outside expert to identify who will be most effective)";
- "Request that the TV morning and daytime talk shows feature special vaccination reunion moments with everyday Americans talking about what this means to them (ex: hugging grandma for the first time)";
- "Request that major live TV entertainment shows feature hosts being vaccinated on air (ex: the hosts of The Voice)";
- "Work with Hispanic entertainment outlets to get vaccination storylines into scripted shows and gameshows";
- "Work with NFL, NASCAR, MLB, CMA to request they create content with their talent and release through their broadcast and social channels";
- "Work with the Hollywood guilds to work vaccination messaging into scripted and reality TV shows";
- "Work with all major sports leagues to send vaccination information to ticket holders";
- "Work with Instagram to produce a series about vaccines";
- "Create a TikTok #PassTheMic campaign ... launch with major influencers to begin the series"; and
- "Launch Hollywood comedy writers video content."
Stephen Colbert, host of CBS' "The Late Show," was one of many television personalities who emphatically pushed for COVID-19 vaccination.
The Vax-Scene - The Box Setyoutu.be
Kristina Schake, appointed by Biden to lead the vaccination campaign and now executive vice president of global communications at Disney, suggested in one of her CCC correspondences that "no pharma companies are involved." While perhaps not directly involved, in other CCC talking-point documentation, it is explicitly stated that it "is vital that everyone get their second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines."
According to the newly revealed documents, the CCC also dispatched select physicians to promote the Biden administration's narrative on news programs, both American and international. For instance, former White House vaccinations coordinator Dr. Bechara Choucair was scheduled to reiterate approved talking points on BBC News and the Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation, while the leader of the White House's Equity Task Force, Dr. Nunez-Smith, was assigned to state the case on NPR, iHeartRadio Public Affairs Show, and elsewhere.
The campaign accounted for potential resistance from conservatives. To bring them on board, the CCC targeted faith leaders, rural leaders (e.g., the Farm Bureau), Country Music TV, NASCAR, the Bulwark, and Fox News.
Big support from Big Pharma
In addition to the pressure exerted by the Biden administration on media companies and personalities to reiterate the approved vaccine narrative, financial incentives linked to media sponsorships and ad buys by big pharmaceutical companies may also have had a significant impact on message consistency.
The Tampa Bay Times reported that Pfizer, one of the pharmaceutical giants that produced a COVID-19 vaccine, made $81.3 billion in 2021, nearly double its revenue in 2020. Since the onset of the pandemic, Pfizer spent over $25 million for in-house lobbying and in payments to 19 lobbying firms, all seeking to protect its product and promote "more robust" U.S. vaccination programs. In 2019, Pfizer was one of the most popular stocks held by members of Congress.