Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) criticized the Biden administration's door-to-door vaccination strategy as a federal surge response team arrived in the state to help boost vaccine numbers, with the governor saying he doesn't want the government to "compel" vaccination.
“I have directed our health department to let the federal government know that sending government employees or agents door-to-door to compel vaccination would NOT be an effective OR a welcome strategy in Missouri,” Parson tweeted Wednesday.
Parson added the state "will continue to offer convenient vaccination options to all Missourians for those who want a COVID-19 vaccine," noting both he and his wife received the vaccine "and we encourage anyone age 12 and up to get vaccinated to protect themselves and those around them."
I have directed our health department to let the federal government know that sending government employees or agents door-to-door to compel vaccination would NOT be an effective OR a welcome strategy in Missouri!— Governor Mike Parson (@GovParsonMO) July 8, 2021
The governor's public rebuff of the door-to-door vaccination push came a day after a member of a federal surge response team arrived to give epidemiological support as Missouri faces low vaccination rates, the Missouri Independent reported.
State officials had requested aid from the federal response teams that the White House announced last week, a spokeswoman for the state's health department had told The Kansas City Star.
“We can continue to provide updates as more information regarding surge team support is received from the [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention],” Department of Health and Senior Services spokeswoman Lisa Cox told the Missouri Independent, “but we are looking forward to collaborating with them and learning more about how the Delta variant is impacting Missouri, specifically southwest Missouri initially.”
More remote and in-person members will be added to help with vaccine strategies and data in upcoming weeks, Cox added.
The governor voiced reservations about the federal grassroots push after President BidenJoe BidenFord to bolster electric vehicle production in multi-billion dollar push Protesters demonstrate outside Manchin's houseboat over opposition to reconciliation package Alabama eyes using pandemic relief funds on prison system MORE highlighted door-to-door and community-level outreach efforts earlier this week.
Missouri is seeing an increase in cases as only 45 percent of its population has received one shot of the vaccine, the Missouri Independent noted.
The increase is due to the delta variant that has been hitting unvaccinated individuals particularly hard.