Coronavirus

CNN anchor John King reveals he has multiple sclerosis and emphasizes the importance of vaccines

"I’m going to share a secret I’ve never spoken before: I’m immunocompromised, I have multiple sclerosis."

John King shared his diagnosis CNN

CNN anchor John King surprised viewers Tuesday when he shared — live on air — that he has multiple sclerosis, while making a point about the importance of vaccines to protect the immunocompromised.

The Dorchester native revealed his diagnosis during a segment of his show, Inside Politics. 

“I’m going to share a secret I’ve never spoken before: I’m immunocompromised, I have multiple sclerosis,” he said. “So, I’m grateful you’re all vaccinated. I’m grateful my employer says all these amazing people who work on the floor…are vaccinated now that we have vaccines. I worry about bringing it home to my 10-year-old son who can’t get a vaccine.”

Though having MS doesn’t make you immunocompromised, most therapies treat the disease by weakening the immune system’s response. 

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“I don’t like the government telling me what to do. I don’t like my boss telling me what to do,” King said. “In this case, it’s important.”

In a GBH News segment on Boston Public Radio, King said he decided to speak out about his diagnosis after having to cover Tucker Carlson suggesting that Colin Powell’s death proves vaccines don’t work. Powell, 84, died Monday of complications related to COVID-19, and was fully vaccinated, but was also severely immunocompromised. 

“It was not planned. It is a secret I have kept for a long time except for a very few people,” he told the hosts. “When you have this misinformation about vaccines in a way that threatens people — 727,000 have died of COVID, they’re all American treasures just like Colin Powell was — if we could do anything to protect them we should do it. Even if we have to set aside a personal preference or principle. This is big enough.”

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