President Joe Biden declared the covid-19 pandemic ‘over’ in a statement that surprised officials in his administration and led to questions about why the government continues to enforce its mandates. federal government and seek more funding to fight the disease.
Biden’s statement, made during an interview with CBS’ 60 Minutes that aired Sunday night, caught administration officials by surprise, two senior health officials told The Washington Post.
And his seemingly upbeat comments may have hit his request to Congress for $22.4 billion in funds to fight the pandemic. Republicans have been wary about funding support, and Biden’s claims have not won him any support.
“The pandemic is over,” Biden told CBS News. ‘We’re still having issues with COVID. We’re still doing a lot of work on it. But the pandemic is over. If you notice, no one is wearing a mask. Everyone seems to be in pretty good shape, and so I think it’s changing. ‘
Earlier this summer, the US extended its designation of a national emergency. The designation expires in October. It gives the administration flexibility to fight the pandemic, including quickly authorizing treatments and keeping more Americans covered by Medicaid.
President Joe Biden declares the covid-19 pandemic ‘over’ in an interview with CBS News
The World Health Organization also says covid remains a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.
And Ashish Jha, the White House coronavirus coordinator, said earlier this month that covid is still there.
“We have a virus that is still circulating, still killing hundreds of Americans every day,” Jha said. ‘I think we all as Americans must rally together to try to protect Americans… and do what we can to get our health care system through what could be a season. hard autumn and winter ahead.’
About 65,000 new infections have been reported every day for the past two weeks, according to Johns Hopkins University. And about 400 people are dying every day in the United States from the disease.
Biden, in the interview, admitted it’s still a ‘tough time.’
‘I think you agree that the impact on the psyche of the American people as a result of the pandemic is profound. Think how that changed everything. You know, people’s attitudes about themselves, about their families, about the state of their country, about the state of their community. And so there’s a lot of uncertainty there, a lot of uncertainty,’ he said.
‘It was a very difficult time. Very difficult,’ he noted.
Republicans jumped into his comments to protest the White House’s request for $22.4 billion to fight the coronavirus pandemic with vaccines, tests and treatments.
With daily life quickly returning to normal, asking for funding is inherently a difficult purchase.
‘Joe Biden asked Congress to pass $22 billion in new pandemic funding THIS WEEK because he said the pandemic is NOT over! Now that Biden says the pandemic is over, he should END his COVID vax military duty and STOP making young children wear masks in Head Start! ”, Republican Representative Mary Miller of Illinois wrote on Twitter.
And Republican Representative Andy Biggs said Biden should end federal duties, writing that ‘Biden must immediately end his draconian masking duties and vaccines for Americans.’
Biden’s statement raises questions about why federal duties remain in place, such as mandatory vaccinations for military members.
There are still some vaccine requirements for staff at Medicare and Medicaid participating health care facilities.
The White House argued that covid cases could increase this fall and that without additional funding, easy access to testing, vaccines and boosters may not be available. As of September 2, Americans can no longer request free at-home rapid tests from the federal government.
There is still the question of the federal mandates Biden ordered and whether they will be upheld. The White House did not respond to DailyMail.com’s investigation into the duties.
Federal mandates in place include:
- Vaccine requirements for employees in Medicare and Medicaid participating health care facilities
- Biden also signed a vaccine authorization for federal workers but that is on hold pending a hearing in September on his order.
- Regulations on wearing masks on public transport – including flights and subways – have been rescinded by the courts but the Justice Department is appealing.
- The Pentagon requires all members of the military to be vaccinated
- Visitors to the United States must present proof of vaccination before entering the country
In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have relaxed restrictions on dogs in recent months, such as shortening the quarantine period from 10 days to 5 days.
The CDC also places less emphasis on social distancing. New guidelines released in August removed the ‘six-legged’ standard.
It’s unclear how Biden’s comments will affect state and local guidelines in areas like New York, where city officials have fired teachers for failing to meet vaccine requirements. ask for.