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‘Star Trek’ actor George Takei: ‘There’s still hope’ Marco Rubio reacts badly to COVID shot

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On Sunday, actor George Takei went after Marco Rubio (R-FL) on Twitter and said that “there’s still hope” that he will experience an allergic reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine. Rubio received his first inoculation over the weekend. The backlash on Twitter was swift as Takei was branded a ‘hateful Karen’ for his malicious tweet.

“There are very, very few instances of known allergic reactions to the Covid-19 vaccine, but Marco Rubio has always thought of himself as one in a million so there’s still hope,” tweeted Takei to his 3.2 million Twitter followers.

Rubio is the acting chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. He was offered a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine during the first week of distribution as part of a government continuity plan, according to Politico. The Florida senator posted a picture of his COVID-19 inoculation on Twitter and said he was confident in its safety and efficacy. Many on the left criticized him for getting the shot before first responders and frontline personnel.

However, as many politicians are doing, Rubio took the inoculation to show that it is safe for others to do so. President-elect Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be doing the same thing.

In a letter sent Thursday, Brian Monahan, attending physician of the U.S. Congress, urged members of the House and Senate to make vaccination appointments. They would be given priority before essential staff members. Vaccines have arrived at Walter Reed Medical Center over the past days for federal workers and officials, and thousands are designated for members of Congress.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Chuck Schumer were among Democratic lawmakers who also posted about receiving the vaccination.

There have been at least six serious allergic reactions in the U.S. to the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine so far. A large-scale rollout of the vaccine is now in progress. At least one of those affected has absolutely no history of allergic reactions.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines, updated Saturday, say that people who have had “severe allergic reactions,” or anaphylaxis, to an ingredient in the COVID-19 vaccine, should not receive that specific vaccine. But most don’t know what the ingredients in the vaccine include.

Via the CDC:

“If you have had a severe allergic reaction to other vaccines or injectable therapies, you should ask your doctor if you should get a COVID-19 vaccine. Your doctor will help you decide if it is safe for you to get vaccinated.”

“CDC recommends that people with a history of severe allergic reactions not related to vaccines or injectable medications—such as allergies to food, pet, venom, environmental, or latex—may still get vaccinated. People with a history of allergies to oral medications or a family history of severe allergic reactions, or who might have a milder allergy to vaccines (no anaphylaxis)—may also still get vaccinated.”

“If you have a severe allergic reaction after getting the first shot, you should not get the second shot. Your doctor may refer you to a specialist in allergies and immunology to provide more care or advice.”

Dr. Peter Marks, director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics and Evaluation, told reporters “the culprit” for the allergic reactions could be an ingredient in the vaccine called polyethylene glycol (PEG), but he was not certain.

Other U.S. government officials have also been offered early COVID-19 vaccinations, although President Trump has said White House officials would only receive them if “specifically necessary.” The president, who recovered from COVID-19 back in October, also said he would take the vaccine at an “appropriate time.”

Vice President Mike Pence, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) have all received their first inoculations as of this weekend and are slated to receive their follow-up dose three weeks later.

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