Fri. May 27th, 2022


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‘I didn’t say that’ Tetchy Joe Biden snaps back at reporter during Covid briefing question

3 min read

Joe Biden says unvaccinated US citizens are 'not as smart'

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The US President delivered a statement to Americans yesterday, urging the public to get vaccinated amid what he warned was an “American tragedy”. Mr Biden set out a mandate for two million federal workers to prove they have been vaccinated and wear a face mask.

However, a reporter spurred the President’s ire by reminding Mr Biden of a previous pledge where he vowed fully vaccinated Americans would not need to wear face masks.

The journalist said: “Mr President, you said if you are fully vaccinated, you no longer need to wear a mask.”

“No, I didn’t say that,” replied Biden.

After the reporter clarified he was referring to a statement made by the 46th President in May, Biden said: “That is true at the time because I thought there were people who were going to understand that getting vaccinated makes a gigantic difference.”

“What happened was, the new variant came along, they didn’t get vaccinated, it spread more rapidly and more people were getting sick.”

During the address, the US President issued a stark warning for Americans who have not yet been vaccinated and said he would help provide incentives for people to get jabbed.

On the state of the coronavirus pandemic in the US, he said: “We are not fully out of the woods yet because what is happening in America right now is a pandemic of the unvaccinated.”

He added: “I am calling on all states and local governments to use funding they have received, including from the American rescue plan, to give $100 to anyone who gets fully vaccinated.”

“If incentives help us beat this virus I believe we should use them.”

The 46th President went on to tell Americans that getting vaccinated would mean “we are better protected as a nation to continue reopening safely and responsibly”.

Around 90 million people who are eligible to get inoculated are estimated to have refused a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Biden described the limited take-up as an “American tragedy” and added “if you’re out there unvaccinated, you don’t have to die”.

Cases in the US hit around 80,000 a day in recent weeks, up drastically from the 13,000 recorded per day in late June.

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Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also found that in Louisiana, Florida, Arkansas, Mississippi and Alabama, daily cases have risen disproportionately.

Mr Biden’s mandate for America’s two million federal workers will mean they will either have to prove they have been vaccinated or be regularly tested for the coronavirus.

He continued: “Anyone who does not attest to being fully vaccinated will be required to wear a mask on the job no matter their geographic location, physically distance from all other employees and visitors, comply with a weekly or twice weekly screening testing requirement, and be subject to restrictions on official travel.”

The National Treasury Employees Union, which employs around 150,000 workers across 34 departments and agencies, said while it would encourage members to get jabbed it still had questions about how such rules could be reasonably implemented.

The union’s president, Tony Reardon, said in a statement: “We will work to ensure employees are treated fairly and this protocol does not create an undue burden on them.”

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