ATLANTA — Gov. Brian Kemp says it will take a lot of convincing to get more Georgians vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus.
One of the biggest challenges facing the state is a large number of people remain unvaccinated and have no desire to get vaccinated.
This comes as the city of Savannah announced Monday that it will impose mask mandates across that city again.
In an exclusive interview, Kemp told Channel 2 investigative reporter Justin Gray that he continues to oppose mandates like that.
“Look, the numbers dictate this. I mean 98.5% of the people in the hospital right now for COVID have not been vaccinated,” Kemp said.
Kemp said its clear to him and other politicians that they are not going to convince unvaccinated Georgians to get the vaccine.
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So now he’s asking the unvaccinated to talk to their doctors.
“There’s a lot of people that don’t trust what the government tells them sometimes so that’s why I’m urging people, don’t just believe me or someone else in the government, go talk to your doctor, sit down and understand why they think this is a good decision,” Kemp said.
Gray met with Kate Reddy while she was waiting in line to get a COVID test. She’s fully vaccinated but was still diagnosed with COVID-19 last week.
“I lost my taste and smell, and I had a cough that’s still kind of lingering,” Reddy said.
Hospitalizations and cases in Georgia have doubled in just the past two weeks.
Savannah Mayor Van Johnson announced the city is bringing back it’s indoor mask mandate.
“I’m asking people don’t complain, get vaccinated. Don’t complain, wear a mask,” Johnson said.
Kemp made clear he does not support mask or vaccination mandates.
“I think people are educated enough on how to deal with COVID. We don’t need mandates. We need to continue to share the data and the facts with them,” Kemp said. Kemp told Gray that one thing he thinks would help a lot would be to have the FDA emergency use designation replaced by regular FDA approval.
He believes that would convince some Georgians of the safety of the vaccine.
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