Biden exceeds expectations on vaccines, so far


President BidenJoe Biden Joe Biden’s surprising presidency The Hill’s Morning Report – Biden and McConnell agree on vaccines, infrastructure clash Republican battle with MLB intensifies MORE is carefully raising expectations about the launch of the coronavirus vaccine, announcing Tuesday that all adults will be eligible to receive a dose in the next two weeks and that the “vast majority” will have received a dose by the end of May.

The White House has been diligent in setting achievable goals for Biden’s response to the coronavirus, allowing the president to subsequently exceed or raise expectations.

After initially pushing states to make all adults eligible for vaccinations by May 1, Biden announced Tuesday that all adults could sign up for a dose by April 19. Several states had already made it possible for anyone over the age of 16 to receive a vaccine, while others had established plans to vaccinate all adults on or before April 19.

Biden also announced that the United States has administered more than 150 million doses of vaccines since taking office, far exceeding the initial goal of 100 million doses in his first 100 days in office that Biden has doubled since then.

“The way Biden has been operating at the policy level is to under-promise and outperform. He wants to set reasonable and modest expectations and then do whatever he can to exceed those expectations, ”said Lawrence Gostin, professor of global health law at Georgetown University. “I think it’s wise from a public perspective because it keeps people in the frame of mind that we have to continue to be careful … and that we have to be patient and wait our turn.”

Polls consistently show that a solid majority of the public approves of Biden’s handling of the coronavirus, an issue that is on the minds of many Americans. Democrats are likely to take home the message that they delivered the vaccines and financial relief to increase their chances in the 2022 midterm elections.

“It sets the tone for everything,” Josh Schwerin, a Democratic strategist, said of the response to the virus. “The pandemic is the biggest problem for voters everywhere, and that across party lines and any demographic divide will always be the main problem. Handling it well is the most important thing Biden can do. That doesn’t mean he can just sit back and relax and do nothing else, but it sets the tone for the rest of his first term and the midterm elections. ”

The Biden administration faces real challenges ahead as new variants and a new surge in coronavirus cases threaten progress. Officials are also fighting to vaccinate Americans who hesitate to get vaccinated, including some in minority and Republican communities.

Biden made confronting the pandemic a central focus of his successful presidential campaign and has spent his first 75 days in office focused on addressing the coronavirus.

The Biden administration has worked to accelerate the production and delivery of licensed vaccines in the US, two of which were approved under the Trump administration and one under Biden, and is working with state and local officials to expand access to them. The White House says there will be enough vaccines for all Americans by the end of May.

“Even moving at the record speed that we are moving at, we are not even halfway through vaccinating more than 300 million Americans,” Biden said Tuesday while emphasizing continued surveillance against the virus. “This is going to take time.”

Biden’s approach to setting lower expectations has differed from that of President TrumpDonald Trump Joe Biden’s surprising presidency The Hill’s Morning Report – Biden and McConnell agree on vaccines, infrastructure clash Republican battle with MLB escalates MORE, who regularly set lofty targets related to the virus that were not met. For example, Trump, who has taken credit for the vaccines, predicted that one could be delivered before Election Day.

“The most important thing is not rhetorical. It’s that people can really see and feel a difference in their lives, ”said Schwerin.

The White House hopes the new April 19 target will provide clarity and allow for a faster pace of vaccinations, White House press secretary. Jen psakiJen PsakiOn The Money: Manchin Says He Will Not Support 28 Percent Corporate Tax Increase | Yellen Calls for Global Minimum Corporate Tax War for Voting Laws Further Corrodes Election Confidence Easter Bunny Pays Surprise Visit to White House Meeting Room MORE he told reporters on Tuesday, although authorities have stressed that eligible Americans should not expect to receive a dose on April 19.

The White House is also well aware of the highly contagious coronavirus variants circulating in the US against which the most powerful weapons are vaccines.

“The main theme here is that there is a recognition that we are in a race, a race between vaccines and variants,” said Anand Parekh, chief medical adviser at the Bipartisan Policy Center. “The way out of this is to vaccinate the American public as quickly as possible.”

Biden and his team are running into obstacles in persuading all American adults to get the vaccine, with data showing doubts among ethnic and racial minority groups as well as Republicans.

“It is one thing to achieve universal vaccine eligibility. It is quite another thing to achieve universal vaccine coverage, and I think that is where its weakness lies. That is where the vulnerability of the United States is, ”said Gostin. “We should applaud the fact that everyone will be eligible, but we cannot congratulate ourselves because the real goal is herd immunity, and we cannot achieve that unless people come forward and get vaccinated.”

The Biden administration is spending about $ 10 billion from the coronavirus relief plan to expand access to vaccines through community health centers and increase vaccine acceptance through support for plans such as door-to-door outreach. door.

In early April, the administration announced a broad network of 275 organizations, including sports leagues, businesses, and faith-based groups, participating in a grassroots effort to instill public confidence about vaccines.

And with the approval of the $ 1.9 trillion coronavirus rescue plan, the administration wants to do more to address the adverse economic impact the virus has had on American families and businesses.

“The response to the virus is the main concern of voters. It was in the 2020 elections, it will be in the 2022 elections and probably 2024 as well, “said Zac Petkanas, former senior adviser to Hillary clintonHillary Diane Rodham Clinton: Will Ocasio-Cortez challenge Biden or Harris in 2024? What G. Gordon Liddy Taught Me About the Hillary Clinton Civil Disagreement: The Filibuster for Voting Rights Legislation Must Be Lifted MORE. “It is a huge political imperative for Democrats not only that the health aspects of the response to the virus are correct, but also that the economic response is correct.”

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