Anderson Cooper admits Florida surgeon general’s claim about vaccine long-term efficacy ‘certainly true’

While criticizing the confirmation of Dr. Joseph Ladapo as Florida’s next surgeon general, CNN’s Anderson Cooper admitted that Ladapo is correct when it comes to the long-term efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines.

During Wednesday’s confirmation hearing, Ladapo was grilled repeatedly on the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines by state Sen. Lauren Book. Book and her fellow state Democrats later left the hearing in response to Ladapo’s answer.

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CNN host Anderson Cooper.

CNN host Anderson Cooper.
(Getty Images)

“So what I would say is that the most commonly used vaccines in the United States, which would be the Pfizer product and the product that was developed by Moderna, have been shown to have relatively high effectiveness for the prevention of hospitalization and death. And over time, relatively low, low protection from infection,” Ladapo said.

Book appeared on “Anderson Cooper 360” to discuss what she considered a “terrifying” response. Cooper, however, admitted that his comment was “certainly true.”

“He was also pretending that his answer is a scientific answer to that question, but I mean, his final, you know, the way he phrased the final — the answer that we just played there, he chose to focus on the most negative aspects, which is that, you know, in his, I’m paraphrasing him, that long term the vaccines did not show over top over a certain period of time, an effectiveness, which is certainly true over a long enough period of time the vaccines are not as effective,” Cooper said.

Despite this, Cooper continued to call out Ladapo for the “very strange way to phrase” the vaccine’s lack of effectiveness long term.

Newly appointed state Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo speaks during a press conference at Neo City Academy in Kissimmee, Florida. 

Newly appointed state Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo speaks during a press conference at Neo City Academy in Kissimmee, Florida. 
(Paul Hennessy / SOPA Images/Sipa USA)(Sipa via AP Images)

“But phrasing it that way is a very strange way to phrase it when in fact, the most direct answer is the vaccines are very effective. And the booster shows great efficacy as well as opposed to well just over an undisclosed, undisclosed long period of time they’re not,” Cooper said.

“Absolutely Anderson, you are 100% correct,” Book responded before accusing Ladapo of being a mouthpiece for Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis. 

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“Again, to the point that this is become a political mouthpiece for the governor and extremely dangerous measure for Floridians, 21 million Floridians deserve more than a mouthpiece for the governor, then talking sound bites that sound good and suit a narrative,” Book said. “At the end of the day, we know that vaccines work at the end of the day, we know that mask wearing works and prevents the spread of COVID-19. These are not — these are not very difficult to understand. And the top doctor in the state of Florida should be able to answer very simple yes or no questions when it comes to the health safety and well-being of Floridians across the state.”

Newly appointed state Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo speaks during a press conference Sept. 22, 2021, at Neo City Academy in Kissimmee, Florida. 

Newly appointed state Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo speaks during a press conference Sept. 22, 2021, at Neo City Academy in Kissimmee, Florida. 
(Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

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In a comment to Fox News, Florida Department of Health press secretary Jeremy Redfern said, “The Surgeon General would appreciate the opportunity to go over the data on vaccine effectiveness with Senator Book, just like he has with other officials across the aisle, if she responded to one of our office’s multiple requests for a meeting.”

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