Texas Attorney General Paxton announced this week that his office has launched an investigation into the three pharmaceutical companies to determine if they conducted gain-of-function research and if they misled the public on the matter.
Paxton said on Monday that three companies that he is focused on are Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson and that he’s also investigating claims that the companies made about “the efficacy of their Covid-19 vaccines and the likelihood of transmitting Covid-19 after taking the vaccines in violation of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.”
“The development of the Covid-19 vaccine, and the representations made by and knowledge of Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson, are of profound interest to the public’s health and welfare,” Paxton said in a statement. “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. If public health policy was developed on the basis of flawed or misleading research, the public must know. 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.”
The statement from Paxton’s office said that the investigation will also look at whether vaccine trial data was manipulated. He noted that the probe “concerns potentially fraudulent activity that falls outside the scope of legal immunity granted to manufacturers of the Covid-19 vaccine.”
The investigation will force the companies to turnover documents that the public would not otherwise have access to, Paxton said.
The effort follows in the footsteps of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who directed the Florida Supreme Court to convene a grand jury to investigate “any and all wrongdoing” by those manufacturers with respect to the vaccines.
“We’ll be able to get the data whether they want to give it or not,” DeSantis said. “In Florida, it is illegal to mislead and misrepresent, especially when you are talking about the efficacy of a drug.”