Grant Shapps misspoke about double vaccinated people on BBC Breakfast

13 August 2021
What was claimed

Grant Shapps said that people who are double vaccinated are more likely to get and carry Covid-19.

Our verdict

Grant Shapps did say this. His office has explained that it was a simple mistake. He intended to say that people who are double vaccinated are much less likely to get and carry Covid-19.

What was claimed

The Covid-19 variants have planned release dates, as shown by a document from the WHO, John Hopkins University, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the World Economic forum.

Our verdict

This document appears to be fake. There is no evidence that the Covid-19 variants are being planned.

A Facebook video post shares a clip of the Transport Secretary Grant Shapps saying: “We know that double vaccinated, fully vaccinated people are much more likely to get and also carry the coronavirus".

It follows this with another video showing a document with what appears to be a ‘plan’ of the Covid-19 variants that will appear in future. The video finishes with a man making many claims about the Covid-19 vaccines. 

The video of Mr Shapps is genuine, but he misspoke in the clip. He meant to say double vaccinated people are “less” likely to catch coronavirus, instead of “more”. The document seems to be fake, and several of the other claims are false or need more context.

Did Grant Shapps say that? 

Full Fact has confirmed with the Department for Transport that, during his interview with BBC Breakfast on 9 July 2021, Mr Shapps did say: “We know that double vaccinated, fully vaccinated people are much more likely to get and also carry the coronavirus".

His office told us that this was a simple error, and Mr Shapps had intended to say that fully vaccinated people are much less likely to get and carry the coronavirus. 

As we have written many times before, the Covid-19 vaccines have been shown to be highly effective in preventing symptomatic or serious illness and death from the SARS-CoV-2 virus. 

A Public Health England (PHE) study from June, for example, showed that two doses of vaccine are 79% effective against symptomatic disease, and 96% effective against hospitalisation with the Delta variant (which is currently dominant in the UK). We also know that people who are vaccinated are less likely to transmit the virus, even if they do get infected.

There isn’t a Covid-19 variant ‘plan’

The video also includes a document, written in Spanish, showing the ‘Lanzamiento’ (launch) date for what appear to be different SARS-CoV-2 variants, many of them in the future. The document features logos from the World Health Organization (WHO), John Hopkins University and the World Economic Forum. 

This document seems to be a fake that has been circulating at least since July. Reuters have previously fact checked it and deemed it to be a chart of unknown origin which has been misattributed to reputable organisations. 

The WHO and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation confirmed to Full Fact that the document has nothing to do with them, and Reuters received confirmation of the same thing from the World Economic Forum. Reuters did not receive a response from John Hopkins University and, at the time of writing, nor have we.

The idea that the variants have planned ‘launch’ dates appears to imply that the Covid-19 variants are being intentionally released. There is no evidence to suggest this. We have written before about how the Covid-19 variants come about. 

Chris Preddie, who was awarded an OBE for youth work in 2012 and is now a prominent anti lockdown campaigner, posted the video in which he then goes on to make a series of additional claims about the vaccines. These include false claims about “depopularisation”, vaccines changing DNA, and being experimental. We have written about these topics before. 

This article is part of our work fact checking potentially false pictures, videos and stories on Facebook. You can read more about this—and find out how to report Facebook content—here. For the purposes of that scheme, we’ve rated this claim as partly false because Grant Shapps did mistakenly say this, but the document included in the video seems to be fake, and several later claims are false.

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