Indiana governor won’t back mandatory COVID-19 vaccine

Coronavirus

FILE – In this April 29, 2020, file photo, Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb prepares to host a virtual media briefing in the Governor’s Office at the Statehouse to provide updates on COVID-19 and its impact on Indiana, in Indianapolis. Gov. Holcomb’s statewide mask mandate and six months of other coronavirus restrictions has stirred discontent among conservatives, complicating his front-runner campaign against underfunded Democratic challenger Woody Myers. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb says he would not support requiring residents to receive a COVID-19 vaccine once such immunizations become available.

The question of mandating such vaccines was asked during a debate among the Republican governor and his two election opponents Tuesday night as Indiana has continued to face steep increases in coronavirus-related deaths and hospitalizations over the past month.

Holcomb said a vaccine should be encouraged when it is safe.

Indiana law already requires 11 vaccines for public school students, including those for whooping cough, tetanus, measles and meningitis.

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