AUSTIN, Texas (TND) — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton will launch an investigation this week seeking to uncover whether pharmaceutical manufacturers misrepresented the efficacy and safety of their COVID-19 vaccines.
The investigation, which is examining Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson, will also look into whether these COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers engaged in controversial gain-of-function research and whether they misled the public about doing so.
The catastrophic effects of the pandemic and subsequent interventions forced on our country and citizens deserve intense scrutiny, and we are pursuing any hint of wrongdoing to the fullest," Paxton said in a press release published Monday. "If any company illegally took advantage of consumers during this period, or compromised people's safety to increase their profits, they will be held responsible."
Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson all held a "vested interest" in the success of their COVID-19 vaccines, which, alongside "reports about [their] alarming side effects," demands an "aggressive" investigation, Paxton's Monday press release insisted.
"Texas's investigation will force these companies to turn over documents the public otherwise could not access," the press release pointed out. "Attorney General Paxton is committed to discovering the full scope of decision-making behind pandemic interventions forced on the public, especially when a profit motive or political pressure may have compromised Americans' health and safety."
Currently, federal law under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act) provides COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers legal immunity from "claims of loss caused by, arising out of, relating to, or resulting from the administration or use of" COVID-19 tests, drugs and vaccines.
However, if Paxton's probe uncovers fraudulent activity, it could have implications on this immunity and open the pharmaceutical manufacturers up to class-action lawsuits from those alleging they were injured by the jab.
News of the investigation comes after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis petitioned for a statewide grand jury to investigate "crimes and wrongdoing committed against Floridians related to the COVID-19 vaccine" in December.
Health care professionals should always communicate the risks of a medical intervention to their patients in a manner that is clinically appropriate and meets standards of ethical practice," Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo said regarding the petition. "We will shed light on the forces that have obscured truthful communication about the COVID-19 vaccines."