Tonight at the CNN/Tea Party Express Republican debate in Tampa, Rick Perry's decision to issue an executive order in 2007 mandating HPV vaccines for girls came up again, and the other candidates went into attack mode — particularly Michele Bachmann. The Republican candidates discussion of the HPV vaccine contained a stunning amount of incorrect information and batshit crazy analysis, but that pretty much goes without saying.
Perry reiterated that he now believes he shouldn't have used an executive order, but noted that parents could opt out and his main goal was to stop cervical cancer. However, Bachmann said that what Perry was actually doing was forcing innocent children to get a "government injection." She explained:
I'm a mom, and I'm a mom of three children. And to have innocent little 12-year-old girls be forced to have a government injection through an executive order is just flat out wrong. That should never be done. That's a violation of liberty interersts. Little girls who have a negative reaction to this potentially dangerous drug don't get a mulligan. They don't get a do-over. The parents don't get a do-over.
Bachmann is actually the mother of three daughters but apparently even she's getting confused about the number of children she has. As an aside, Bachmann mentioned that she's also finds it appalling that President Obama is forcing health insurance companies to cover the "morning after abortion pill," saying:
President Obama in a stunning, shocking level of power now just recently told all private insurance companies you must offer the morning after abortion pill because I said so and it must be free of charge. That same level coming through executive orders and through government dictates is wrong. And that's why again we have to have someone who's absolutely committed to the repeal of Obamacare and I am. I won't rest until it's repealed.
Bachmann will surely be happy to learn that nothing she said here is true. The pill she named doesn't even exist. While the morning after pill will be covered by new insurance plans, it doesn't cause abortions. The abortion-inducing drug RU-486 isn't covered.
Bachmann went on to attack Perry for his ties to Merck, which manufactures the Gardasil vaccine. He responded:
The company was Merck and it was a $5,000 contribution that I had received from them. I raise about $30 million and if you're saying I can be bought for $5,000 I'm offended.
That's right. While you can certainly buy Rick Perry, it's going to cost a hell of a lot more than $5,000.
The debate over HPV vaccines got pretty nasty, but up to this point, it was missing the requisite hysteria over turning precious little girls into depraved skanks. Then Rick Santorum piped up:
Ladies and gentleman why do we innoculate people with vaccines in public schools? Because we're afraid of those diseases being communicable between people at school. And therefore, to protect the rest of the people at school, we have vaccinations to protect those children. Unless Texas has a very progressive way of communicating diseases in their school by way of their curriculum then there is no government purpose served for having little girls innoculated at the force and compulsion of the government.
Exactly. Unless Texas schools are letting students bang their HPV-riddled classmates in hallways, classrooms, and cafeterias, there's no reason school would be a good place to find a large group of children to innoculate. If for some strange reason, you're passionate about making sure slutty girls don't get cancer, you should vaccinate them where they're likely to pass the disease around. Let's keep the HPV vaccine out of schools and station more nurses in the back seats of teenagers' cars.