JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Jan 8, 2018) – A bill introduced in the Missouri Senate would ban vaccines containing mercury above a specified amount and push back against federal narratives on vaccinations.

Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal (D-University City) prefiled Senate Bill 741 (SB741) on Dec. 1. Under the proposed law, “beginning August 28, 2019, no vaccine containing more than one microgram of mercury per five-tenths-milliliter dose shall be administered to a child or adult in Missouri.”

An exemption in the bill would allow the use of vaccines containing mercury above the specified amount only upon a finding by the state’s director of the department of health and senior services, with the governor’s concurrence, that an actual or potential public health emergency exists.

Passage of SB741 would address one aspect of vaccine safety – toxic ingredients. While it would be limited to addressing only one type of toxin, mercury, it would take the first step toward pushing back against federal narratives on vaccinations and make it more difficult for the feds to enforce federal mandates in the future.


SB741 sets the stage to nullify potential vaccine mandates, which generally have their basis in federal recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Although these recommendations are not binding, they can influence policy-makers at the local and state levels to adopt coercive vaccine mandates.

The vaccine industry sponsors most of the research relied upon by the CDC in making its recommendations, despite the existence of a strong conflict of interest by the vaccine industry. Vaccine manufacturers are shielded from liability for harm caused by vaccines due to legal protections put into place after extensive lobbying by the pharmaceutical industry. The normal product liability rules applicable to manufacturers of other products do not apply to the vaccine industry. Claims of harm caused by vaccines are heard by a special federal vaccine court and any compensation granted by the court is paid by the public, through a surcharge on vaccines. It is not paid by the vaccine manufacturer. For these reasons, vaccines are a “cash cow” for the pharmaceutical industry and these companies have a great financial interest in promoting their use.

Further, a revolving door exists between the vaccine industry and the CDC, with many members of the federal agency taking lucrative jobs with the vaccine industry after leaving the CDC, and vice versa. An example of this is Dr. Julie Gerberding, director of the Center for Disease Control from 2002 to 2009. She accepted a highly paid position as president of Merck’s vaccine division only about a year after leaving the CDC.

Under the current system, the number of vaccines recommended by the CDC is steadily rising, with the current number of recommended doses throughout childhood now reaching 72. With a strong conflict of interest influencing the federal government’s vaccine recommendations, it is critical that states have the power to reject federal vaccine mandates.

The ingredients in each type of vaccine are different, but, generally, vaccines contain a myriad of toxic substances. These can include, among others, ethyl mercury (found in vaccines in the form of the preservative thimerosal), aluminum, and formaldehyde. Although thimerosal has been removed from most of the vaccines on the CDC’s recommended schedule for children, or thimerosal-free versions of the vaccines exist, according to the World Mercury Project, which is chaired by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., thimerosal remains in approximately one third to one half of the influenza vaccine doses administered to pregnant women and infants. Despite this, the CDC recommends the influenza vaccine for pregnant women and for children ages six months through 18 years of age.

The CDC and FDA downplay concerns related to thimerosal in vaccines. For example, the CDC states on its website that the ethylmercury found in thimerosal is cleared from the human body more quickly than methyl mercury, the kind of mercury one is exposed to when eating fish. However, others who have researched this issue believe differently. The World Mercury Project indicates on its website that there is no safe level of exposure to mercury and that ethyl mercury is significantly more toxic than methylmercury and persists in the brain for longer. The World Mercury Project’s website references scientific research which calls into question the safety of mercury-containing vaccines.The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) is a non-profit educational organization and its website is also a source of information concerning the toxins found in vaccines, including of the potential dangers of mercury-containing vaccines. The NVIC’s website contains a discussion of the cumulative exposure to mercury that a child may receive if born to a mother who received a thimerosal-containing influenza vaccine during pregnancy, and also administered thimerosal-containing vaccine as an infant and child.

There is no consensus in the scientific community about the safety and effectiveness of vaccines or the necessity for them, including with respect to mercury-containing vaccines. 

As we’ve seen with marijuana and industrial hemp, a federal regulation becomes ineffective when states enact contradictory policies. If multiple states ban or limit mercury vaccines, it will become extremely difficult for the federal government to enforce any kind of future federal mandate. State action banning these vaccines will also undermine the federal narrative. This will make it harder for the feds to generate support for nationwide vaccine policies.

With this proposed legislation, the state of Missouri has the opportunity to lead on this important issue and to become the potential standard bearer for resisting federal vaccine policy at the state level.


SB741 will be officially introduced after Missouri General Assembly kicks off its 2018 regular session on Jan. 3. It will then need to be assigned to a committee where it must pass by a majority vote before moving forward in the legislative process.

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