Skip to content
Subscriber Only

California's Democratic Senators Want to End Most Vaccine Exemptions

The backlash to the measles outbreak builds.
Senator Barbara Boxer (L) celebrates wit
Photographer: Mark Ralston/AFP

The first week of February may well be a turning point for political opposition to critics of vaccination. On Wednesday afternoon, California's senators released a letter they'd sent to the state's appointed Health and Human Services secretary in which they urged a change in personal exemptions to vaccines.

"California's current law allows two options for parents to opt out of vaccine requirements for school and daycare," wrote Democrats Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein. "They must either make this decision with the aid of a health professional, or they can simply check a box claiming that they have religious objections to medical care. We think both options are flawed, and oppose even the notion of a medical professional assisting to waive a vaccine requirement unless there is a medical reason, such as an immune deficiency."