Donald Trump revealed he received a booster shot of the Covid-19 vaccine, drawing boos from a crowd of his supporters in Dallas.
The former president made the disclosure on Sunday night during the final stop of The History Tour, a live interview show he has been doing with the former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly.
“Both the president and I are vaxxed,” O’Reilly said at the American Airlines Center, drawing some jeers from the audience, according to video shared online by O’Reilly’s “No Spin News.”
“Did you get the booster?” he asked the former president. “Yes,” Trump responded. “I got it, too,” O’Reilly said, eliciting more hectoring.
“Don’t! Don’t! Don’t! Don’t! Don’t!” Trump told the crowd, waving off their reaction with his hand.
While Trump has expressed opposition to vaccine mandates, he has long taken credit for the vaccines developed on his watch, a stance he reiterated during the interview.
“We got a vaccine done,” he said, telling supporters that wariness of the vaccine was “playing into the hands” of his opponents. “Don’t take it away from ourselves. You’re playing right into their hands when you sort of like, ‘oh the vaccine’ … no mandates, but take credit.”
At the same time, he has refused to urge his supporters to take them, even though Republicans remain far less likely than Democrats to be protected.
For instance, while other world leaders, including Mike Pence, Joe Biden, and Kamala Harris received their doses publicly to promote the lifesaving medicine, Trump chose to receive his in private – an acknowledgement of the unpopularity of the vaccine with large swaths of his base.
While he has blamed the Biden administration for high levels of vaccine skepticism, he repeatedly undermined public health recommendations while in office, encouraging the use of unproven treatments and playing down the threat the virus posed as he tried to prioritize economic recovery and secure a second term.
Trump had told the Wall Street Journal in a September interview that he “probably“ wouldn’t get a booster shot.
The US government has been urging all eligible Americans to get booster shots as quickly as possible as the country faces a surge in the new, highly contagious omicron variant, which recently overtook delta to become the dominant variant in the US.