GOP presidential contender Donald Trump on Sept. 16 continued to promote his belief that vaccines are linked to the development of autism and other medical cases, despite evidence to the contrary.
During the second Republican presidential debate Wednesday night, Trump explained his position further.
“I’ve seen it,” he said to moderator Jake Tapper. “You take this little beautiful baby boy, and you pump – it looks just like it’s meant for a horse.”
“We’ve had so many instances … a child went to have the vaccine, got very, very sick, and now is autistic,” Trump added. He later clarified some of his stance and said he does support some vaccines if they are given in smaller doses over a longer period of time, The Hill noted.
“Autism has become an epidemic,” he said. “It has gotten totally out of control.”
Other presidential contenders, including Drs. Ben Carson and Rand Paul, also commented on the use of vaccines. They both questioned the current standards for vaccines, but were not as reactive in their positions as Trump.
For example, Carson, a neurologist, said that vaccinations have not been linked to the development of autism, but later suggested that a link may still be there with further research to do.
“It has not been adequately revealed to the public what’s actually going on,” he said.
Paul, an ophthalmologist, promoted the benefits of vaccines, reversing her earlier stance where he also suggested that vaccines may be linked to medical disorders.
Vaccines “are one of the greatest medical discoveries of all time,” Paul said. “I ought to have the right to spread my vaccines out, at the very least,” he added, advocating for greater freedoms in medical decision making.
While Trump suggested that smaller doses will have a “big impact on autism,” Carson was asked to reply.
“He’s an okay doctor,” the neurologist quipped about Trump’s comments.