SARASOTA, Fla. — Florida's governor on Friday declined to say whether he's received a COVID-19 booster shot, telling reporters it's a "private matter."
"That's something that I think people should just make their own decisions on," Gov. Ron DeSantis said during a news conference in Sarasota. "I'm not gonna let that be a weapon for people to be able to use. I think it's a private matter."
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The governor's response came just days after former President Donald Trump declared that politicians who refuse to say whether they’ve received COVID-19 booster shots are "gutless."
In an interview with the conservative One America News Network on Tuesday night, Trump didn't name names when he said some politicians have been afraid to admit they've gotten the booster shot.
"Well, I've taken it. I've had the booster," Trump said. "I watched a couple of politicians be interviewed and one of the questions was, 'Did you get the booster?' And they, oh, oh, they're answering it. Like, in other words, the answer is yes, but they don't want to say it. Because they're gutless."
The 43-year-old DeSantis said Friday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has recommended against boosters for people in his age group, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention overrode that guidance.
"I think that was based on politics. I don't think that was based on science," DeSantis said. "In Florida, they've been available for people. People can make their own decisions on it. But it's not been something that we've been telling people in my age group to go out and do."
The FDA on Jan. 3 made several notable changes to its coronavirus vaccine recommendations, including authorizing a booster shot five months — down from six months — after a person has completed their initial series of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine.
DeSantis — a rising star in the Republican Party who is often mentioned as a possible 2024 presidential contender — received the one-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine in April of last year.