- Nicki Minaj has been an outspoken opponent of the COVID-19 vaccine.
- Controversial Rep George Santos of (R-NY) just introduced a bill that he named after her.
- The bill would establish a ‘development’ period for vaccines.
Nicki Minaj has made no secret of her extreme skepticism regarding the life-saving COVID-19 vaccine. And now, after her outspoken attempts to discredit the vaccinations, wildly controversial Rep George Santos (R-NY), who has been criticized for misleading the public with a number of allegedly false claims about his background and personal life, is introducing a vaccine bill named after her.
Here’s everything to know about the bill and the Nicki Minaj background associated with it.
The bill aims to establish a ‘development period.’
According to Semafor reporter Kadia Goba, who took to Twitter to discuss on Monday, April 17, the bill “establishes a development period” for new vaccines for the purpose of building “public confidence.” Little else is known about the bill or its intentions.
“Ahem. Rep. George Santos just dropped seven bills in the hopper,” Kadia tweeted Monday. “Among them, The Minaj Act, named for — yes, you guessed it — rapper Nicki Minaj that establishes a development period for new vaccines in order to generate public confidence.”
Nicki is an outspoken vaccine opponent.
Nicki courted vaccine misinformation controversy of her own by slamming the vaccine, defending her decision not to get it, and making a claim in September of 2021 that a friend of a cousin had suffered “impotence” as a result of receiving it. “My cousin in Trinidad won’t get the vaccine cuz his friend got it & became impotent,” she tweeted on September 13. “His testicles became swollen. His friend was weeks away from getting married, now the girl called off the wedding. So just pray on it & make sure you’re comfortable with ur decision, not bullied.”
She then tweeted that she wouldn’t be vaccinated until she had done more “research” of her own, despite The Met Gala requiring attendees to do so. “They want you to get vaccinated for the Met,” she tweeted. “If I get vaccinated it won’t [SIC] for the Met. It’ll be once I feel I’ve done enough research. I’m working on that now. In the meantime my loves, be safe. Wear the mask with 2 strings that grips your head & face. Not that loose one.”
The Tweet storm came, appropriately enough, because she had contracted COVID-19 herself after remaining unvaccinated, and wouldn’t be able to attend the big fashion event.
A wild backlash followed.
Not everyone was impressed with Nicki’s approach to discouraging the vaccine. Dr. Anthony Fauci clapped back on CNN a day later. “Is there any evidence that the Pfizer, Moderna, or the [Johnson & Johnson] vaccines cause any reproductive issues, in men or women?” Jake Tapper asked Dr. Fauci in reference to Nicki’s tweets. “The answer to that, Jake, is a resounding no,” Fauci explained. “There’s no evidence that it happens, nor is there any mechanistic reason to imagine that it would happen.”
Meghan McCain also took her to task publicly. “You have an enormous platform and have just spread unimaginable vaccine hesitancy to your fans,” she wrote on Sept 14. “Not only is it deeply irresponsible, it is very sad. I hope you talk to doctors and scientists like @ashishkjha like I did eventually. People are still dying from covid.”
Nicki’s claim was refuted in a big way.
Nicki’s claim didn’t sit well with the Health Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, who held a press conference the next day to refute her claims and quell vaccine hesitancy. Dr. Terrence Deyalsingh explained during the conference that “had to check and make sure that what she was claiming was either true or false.”
He then explained, “We unfortunately wasted so much time yesterday running down this false claim. As far as we know, at this point in time, there has been no such reported either side effect or adverse effect… As we stand now, there is absolutely no reported such side effect or adverse event of testicular swelling in Trinidad or … anywhere. None that we know of anywhere else in the world.”
Nicki also claimed she was invited to the White House over the matter, though the White House denied it entirely.
George Santos is running for re-election.
Despite admitting to lying over a number of bizarre personal background details, including being Jewish, George has announced his intention to run for re-election in 2024. Along with the Nicki Minaj bill, he’s also introduced several others. “ANNOUNCEMENT: I am proudly announcing my bid for re-election for #NY03,” he tweeted on April 17. “This is about TAKING BACK our country and restoring greatness back to New York.”