BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Maryland Governor Larry Hogan and Baltimore City Mayor Brandon Scott are in a war of words over COVID-19 vaccines.
The controversy started Monday when Mayor Scott asked the governor to reserve some doses at the two state-run mass vaccination sites in Baltimore for city residents.
"Half of the doses that are given at those sites should go to the folks who live in that jurisdiction," Mayor Scott said at the time.
Things escalated after WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren questioned Hogan on the issue at the opening of the new M&T Bank Stadium vaccination site Thursday.
While Hogan said he would work to help the city, part of his response outraged Mayor Scott.
"As of last week, Baltimore city had gotten far more than they really were entitled to. We've gotten out to mass vaccination sites here. The city health department is only doing 14% of the shots here in the city. We are doing—with other partners—86% of the effort," Governor Hogan told Hellgren.
In a statement to WJZ, the mayor wrote, "Baltimoreans are Marylanders too. They are both entitled to and deserve the vaccine."
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He criticized the state for failing to provide an equitable share of vaccine to city residents—and for what he called a "broken" appointment system.
"Week after week, the governor has refused to share where the state is allocating doses in Baltimore City.
The dust-up took attention from Hogan's Eastern Shore school tour where he even donned a hat to read Doctor Seuss to students.
"The mayor made several comments for like a solid week about Baltimore City wasn't getting enough vaccines, and that was just false," Hogan said Friday. Baltimore City did get far more than their allocation would be—based on population. They got more than all the counties that are much bigger, so I think Baltimore City is the fifth largest population and they got the number one amount of vaccines so it's just false factually."
The governor's "entitled" comment drew backlash from a number of current and former city leaders.
Former Baltimore health commissioner Dr. Leana Wen tweeted Hogan's response "is out of bounds. Maryland should actually focus on vaccinating MORE vulnerable people."
"Equity has nothing to do with entitlement," City Council President Nick Mosby said on Facebook. "Baltimore City is not looking for special treatment, as the governor implied with his poor choice of words. It is incumbent on our state leadership to recognize the inherent need to distribute this life-saving vaccine to the people who are most likely to die. This is not about entitlement. This is about life and death."
City council member Odette Ramos tweeted, "Shame on Hogan."
The state did reserve some doses for Prince George's County residents at the mass vaccination site at Six Flags in that county.
Slightly more than 7% of all Marylanders had been vaccinated as of Friday.
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