Back in 2011, former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson did tweet “No to mandatory vaccines”. No context to the tweet; however, for the last five years, we must assume that was his stance.

However, in an interview Wednesday on Vermont Public Radio (LISTEN), Gov Johnson appears to have reversed his former position on the public health issue:

“You know, since I’ve said that, I’ve come to find out that without mandatory vaccines, the vaccines that would in fact be issued would not be effective. So it’s dependent that you have mandatory vaccines so that every child is immune. Otherwise, not all children will be immune even though they receive a vaccine.

“In my opinion, this is a local issue. If it ends up to be a federal issue, I would come down on the side of science and I would probably require that vaccine,” he said.

“It’s an evolution actually just in the last few months, just in the last month or so,” he said. “I was under the belief that … ‘Why require a vaccine? If I don’t want my child to have a vaccine and you want yours to, let yours have the vaccine and they’ll be immune.’ Well, it turns out that that’s not the case, and it may sound terribly uninformed on my part, but I didn’t realize that.”

Related: A Libertarian view on health care and government: An interview with Austin Petersen, LP Presidential candidate

Gary Johnson at CPAC FL in Orlando, Florida. photo by Gage Skidmore
Gary Johnson at CPAC FL in Orlando, Florida. photo by Gage Skidmore