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Coronavirus Still Dominates the Conversation for The Biden - Harris Administration

February 22, Parik Ravi

President Biden set a target of 100 million vaccines in the first 100 days of his presidency. To achieve that goal, he would need to administer an average of 1 million vaccines per day. As of February 17th, over 56 million doses have been administered and Biden is well on his way to surpassing his goal.

As mentioned in our last post, Biden’s target was panned by journalists as not being ambitious enough. It is likely that this target was intentionally set to be low so that the administration could surpass the goal and credit itself with an achievement. Nonetheless, the vaccine rollout has been improving since he was sworn in.

During a CNN town hall, Biden said that he believed vaccines would be available for all Americans by July and that the country could get back to “normal” by Christmas of 2021. Once again, it seems as though the president is setting a target he knows that he will not miss to avoid giving people false hope. The administration recently announced that it had secured 200 million more doses by July which is what allowed him to provide this timetable on when the vaccine would be widely available to all Americans.

When asked about the more virulent strains of Covid that have appeared in recent months, the president stated that he was monitoring the situation but that he did not believe those strains would overpower the vaccine. In other words, while vaccines may be less effective against those strains, they are still effective enough to prevent the spread and allow us to reach herd immunity against the virus.

Biden was also asked about his campaign promise to open schools during the first 100 days of his administration. Biden claimed he believed that elementary and middle schools could be opened but that high schools may remain online because science shows that children under 16 are far less likely to contract and spread the virus than children over 16. Biden also suggested that he may advise schools to stay open through the summer to make up for the lost lesson time during the pandemic.

In other news, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is facing blowback from both Democrats and Republicans in New York over allegations that his administration covered up the number of New Yorkers who died in nursing homes. Cuomo is accused of not counting patients from nursing homes who died in hospitals as nursing home deaths. His aide stated that they did this because they were afraid the Trump Administration would use the data against them politically. To make things worse for the New York Governor, a fellow state Democrat accused Cuomo of threatening him when he refused to retract a previous statement criticizing Cuomo.

While Cuomo’s COVID-19 nightmares are far from over, it seems as though the end of the pandemic is in sight for the rest of the country. Biden’s estimate is likely conservative, but it seems as though cases will have dramatically reduced by the summertime. While masks and social distancing may still be required through the end of the year, the end of coronavirus is getting nearer everyday.