LISTEN LIVE KPR - On Air: Listen Live to classical, jazz and NPR news Schedule LATEST
KPR 2 - On Air: Listen live to KPR's all talk-radio service, KPR2 Recordings

Share this page              

N.J. Gov. Chris Christie Jumps Into Vaccine Debate

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie waves to reporters as he leaves Downing Street in London on Monday.

As the country deals with what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is calling a record number of measles cases, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a rumored 2016 presidential contender, has jumped into the national debate on vaccines.

Christie was visiting a facility in England of an American company that makes a flu vaccine. Being that the current measles outbreak has been driven by unvaccinated children, a reporter asked, did he think Americans should vaccinate their kids?

Christie said he and his wife decided to vaccinate their kids, and that is "the best expression I can give you of my opinion."

But then he went on to seemingly allow for some wiggle room: "I also understand that parents need to have some measure of choice in things as well so that's the balance that the government has to decide. But I can just tell people from our perspective, Mary Pat and I have had our children vaccinated and we think it's an important part of making sure we protect their health and the public health."

Quickly, Christie was criticized on Twitter by Dan Pfeiffer, a top adviser to President Obama. Pfeiffer called on Christie to clarify his statement.

Obama, he noted, has said that without dispute, science has validated vaccines.

"There is every reason to get vaccinated, but there aren't reasons to not," Obama told NBC News.

Pfeiffer said it was "important that responsible leaders speak with one voice."

Christie's office quickly clarified what the governor meant.

His spokesman, Kevin Roberts, said in a statement emailed to the press that Christie "believes vaccines are an important public health protection and with a disease like measles there is no question kids should be vaccinated."

The balance he was talking about has to do with different states requiring "different degrees of vaccination," the statement said.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit

Tower Frequencies

91.5 FM KANU Lawrence, Topeka, Kansas City
96.1 FM K241AR Lawrence (KPR2)
89.7 FM KANH Emporia
99.5 FM K258BT Manhattan
97.9 FM K250AY Manhattan (KPR2)
91.3 FM  KANV Junction City, Olsburg
89.9 FM K210CR Atchison
90.3 FM KANQ Chanute

See the Coverage Map for more details

Contact Us

Kansas Public Radio
1120 West 11th Street
Lawrence, KS 66044
Download Map
785-864-4530 (Main Line)
888-577-5268 (Toll Free)