The Corner

Politics & Policy

Biden’s Less-Than-Truthful COVID Speech

During a 24-minute address to the nation last night, President Biden told the American people that they’re “owed nothing less than the truth” about the pandemic.

But the president certainly gave the American people less than the full truth. 

Biden claimed that many people said his goal of 100 million vaccinations in his first 100 days in office was “way over the top” in how ambitious it was. No intelligent and informed person said that goal was ambitious. It was setting a low bar that would obviously be cleared.

Biden also claimed credit for the number of Americans who have been vaccinated between January 20 and March 11, but he did not make a persuasive case that he had done anything that made that number significantly larger than it would have been if he were not president.

If everyone does his part and gets vaccinated, Biden said, then by July 4 — four months from now — “there’s a good chance” that “small groups will be able to get together” outdoors. “That doesn’t mean large events,” he added. 

But the truth is that it’s always been safe for small numbers of people to gather outdoors, and we’ve known that’s been safe since very early in the pandemic. Biden is again setting a low bar — and thus underselling the benefits of vaccination — for political reasons.

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