Jessica Biel's closed-door meeting with California lawmakers to oppose a vaccine bill went much different than the public statements from the actress, a new report claims.
Biel joined vaccine skeptic Robert F. Kennedy Jr. to voice opposition to a California bill called SB 276, that would add more oversight to the process of parents applying for exemptions to the vaccines. Biel has stressed in public statements that she is not opposed to vaccinations and merely wants to respect the right of parents to choose, but one staffer said she had a very different tone in private while meeting with lawmakers.
A staffer who was present at a private lobbying meeting said that Biel and Kennedy delivered remarks about how vaccines are dangerous and ineffective, Jezebel reported. The staffer spoke to the site on condition of anonymity, saying Biel told the lawmakers that she did not use the regular vaccine schedule for her child after a friend's child had negative health effects from a vaccine.
The private statements Biel reportedly made against vaccines seemed to contradict public statements from the actress. After her involvement in the campaign against SB 276 drew controversy, Biel responded with an Instagram post stressing that she was not against vaccinations.
" I am not against vaccinations — I support children getting vaccinations and I also support families having the right to make educated medical decisions for their children alongside their physician," she wrote in the post.
The staffer went on to say that Biel admitted during the meeting that she had visited several doctors before she found one who was comfortable with her preference not to vaccinate on the regular schedule, a practice known as "doctor shopping" that the staffer said SB 276 is trying to prevent. Other members of the group with Biel quickly stopped the actress and steered the discussion away from her admission, the staffer claimed."She practically admitted to doctor shopping, which SB 276 is trying to prevent. She said she wants safe vaccines and mentioned 'corporations' a lot," the staffer said.
Jessica Biel's visit with lawmakers came amid a growing national debate over vaccinations and what measures states can take to compel their use. There have been outbreaks of diseases in a number of states that have added more pressure to this debate, leading to some municipalities taking action requiring people to be vaccinated in order to go into public spaces, but some of these have been overturned by judges.