Vaccination debate spreads


The state's minimum wage was a topic of talk Oct. 30, when state Rep. Liz Pike, R-Camas, met with business owners to talk about state policy. (Troy Wayrynen/The Columbian)

The vaccination debate has spread to Rep. Liz Pike’s Facebook page.

When speaking to The Columbian earlier, Pike was undecided how she would cast her vote on a measure that would remove the personal-belief exemption for immunizing children.

If passed, House Bill 2009, would keep the existing exemptions for both religious and medical reasons, but strike the philosophical-belief exemption currently on the books.

Pike told her Facebook friends she’s recently decided she’s a ‘no’ vote on the bill.

The news spread as fast as measles at Disneyland.

She had more than a hundred ‘likes,’ more than two dozen ‘shares’ and more comments than I care to count.

“Over the past two decades, a lot more information has become available to parents,” Pike wrote. “And, today we have the internet with a 24-7 news cycle. Over the past few years, there has been more public debate surrounding a variety of immunizations, their side effects and possible health risks to babies.”

Parents, she wrote “absolutely must have the right to decide what to put into your child’s body. No one, especially the government, (with all its current mistrust by the public) has the right to put toxic chemicals into your child’s bloodstream without your express permission.”

Pike does not agree schools should keep unvaccinated students out of the classroom.

“… If vaccines are so safe, why is there a National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program?” she responded to one commentator who was not a fan of her position on the measure.

You can read Pike’s initial take on the bill and other Southwest Washington lawmakers’ opinions on the measure by clicking here.


Lauren Dake

Lauren Dake

Lauren Dake covers politics for The Columbian. You can reach her at 360-735-4534 or Follow her on Twitter .

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