Sean Hannity insisted Thursday that he had never changed his stance on COVID-19 vaccines.
Sean Hannity insisted Thursday that he had never changed his stance on COVID-19 vaccines.
Fox News
  • Sean Hannity dialed down his enthusiasm for vaccines after winning praise from President Biden.
  • The Fox host on Monday appeared to encourage viewers to take the COVID-19 vaccine.
  • He changed tack on Thursday, saying: "I never told anyone to get a vaccine."
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Fox News host Sean Hannity walked back on his enthusiasm for COVID-19 vaccines after winning approval from President Biden for praising vaccinations on his show earlier in the week.

Hannity told viewers on his show Thursday that he had "never told anyone to get a vaccine."

"I've been very clear," he said. "I am simply not qualified. I am not a medical doctor. I know nothing about your medical history or your current medical condition."

The comments represented a shift in tone from Hannity's comments Monday when he praised the COVID-19 vaccine.

"'Just like we've been saying, please take COVID seriously," he told viewers.

"I can't say it enough, enough people have died, we don't need any more deaths. Take it seriously."

"It absolutely makes sense for many Americans to get vaccinated. I believe in science, I believe in the science of vaccinations."

Hannity has taken a convoluted line on whether he favors vaccines. He said in January he was "beginning to have doubts" about getting the shots.

In February, he said he was "not anti-vaccine" but also refused to say whether he would take one personally, The Washington Post reported.

His shift in tone came after President Biden noted Wednesday that Republicans and right-wing media networks appeared to have experienced a "come to Jesus" moment on vaccines.

The president appeared to refer to Fox when he said: "One of those other networks – they're not a big fan of mine, one you talk about a lot – but if you notice, as they say in the southern part of my state, they've had an altar call, some of those guys."

Fox hosts appeared to shift noticeably in favor of COVID-19 vaccinations this week. The network on Wednesday rolled out an advert to encourage viewers to receive the vaccine featuring some of its prominent newscasters, CNN reported.

"If you can, get the vaccine," Fox News host Harris Faulkner said in the advert, per CNN.

Some of the network's most prominent voices remain reluctant, however.

Tucker Carlson appeared to implicitly criticise the network's decision to run a vaccination advert less than an hour after it was first broadcast with a dig at CNN.

"As a channel, CNN shouldn't have a position on whether you should take medicine or not, because it's a news channel, it's not a health agency," he said, per CNN.

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