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Arizona State Legislator Calls Mandatory Vaccines Communist

Arizona state lawmaker makes a controversial claim about a proposed public health law.

Duane Paul Murphy

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A Republican Arizona state legislator recently called mandatory vaccinations for children “communist” in the midst of a measles outbreak across the country. As Arizona’s Republican majority legislature recently passed bills allowing for a personal religious and philosophical exemption for required vaccinations, however, Republican Governor Doug Ducey said on Wednesday, February 28, that he would veto these proposals for the sake of public health concerns.

That same day, state representative Kelly Townsend posted online a lengthy criticism of mandatory vaccinations on her Facebook page. In the post, Townsend said regarding mandatory vaccinations, “The idea that we force someone to give up their liberty for the sake of the collective is not based on American values but rather, Communist.”

Only three states, California, Mississippi, and West Virginia, mandate vaccinations for children with no exemptions except medical reasons. Other states such as Texas and Pennsylvania permit both religious and or philosophical exemptions from vaccinations. 

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Duane Paul Murphy is a D.C. college student and student journalist born and raised in Southern California. Currently studying for his bachelor’s in politics and a minor in media studies, Duane Paul is interested in covering domestic as well as international political affairs that impact the lives of everyday people, whether they are young students, professionals, or faculty in higher education.

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