Jen Psaki claims WH will not 'place blame' on those not vaccinated

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday it is not the role of the administration to ‘place blame’ after the governor of Alabama called out Americans who have refused to get vaccinated for the rising COVID rates in the U.S.   

‘I don’t think our role is to place blame, but what we can do is provide accurate information to people who are not yet vaccinated about the risks they are incurring not only on themselves, but also the people around them,’ she said.

Psaki’s comments came after Alabama Governor Kay Ivey blamed Americans who have refused to get vaccinated against coronavirus for rising COVID case rates.

Ivey’s state and others across the South are hammered by new infections – with three states in the region now accounting for 40 percent of active cases nationwide. 

‘Folks are supposed to have common sense. But it’s time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks, not the regular folks.

It’s the unvaccinated folks that are letting us down,’ Ivey, a Republican, told reporters on Thursday.  

Psaki kept the White House response focused on educating people who are not vaccinated about why they should get the shot in the arm. 

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said it is not the role of the administration to 'place blame'

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said it is not the role of the administration to 'place blame'

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (pictured) said that 'it's time to start blaming the unvaccinated' for the new wave of COVID-19 cases

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (pictured) said that 'it's time to start blaming the unvaccinated' for the new wave of COVID-19 cases

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday it is not the role of the administration to ‘place blame’ after the governor of Alabama Kay Ivey called out Americans who have refused to get vaccinated for the rising COVID rates in the U.S. 

Psaki also refused to entertain the possibility the administration would put vaccine mandates in place as the vast majority of new cases have been reported in people who are not vaccinated.

‘That’s not the role of the federal government,’ Psaki said when asked about mandates.

‘That is the role that institutions, private sector entities and others may take.’

President Joe Biden and his officials have take to calling COVID 'a pandemic of the unvaccinated'

President Joe Biden and his officials have take to calling COVID 'a pandemic of the unvaccinated'

President Joe Biden and his officials have take to calling COVID ‘a pandemic of the unvaccinated’

She did express sympathy for Governor Ivey. 

‘We understand her frustration, and we understand the frustrations of leaders out there, and the public voices who are trying to say the right thing, advocate for the efficacy of the virus, save people in their communities.’

She also said any chance to face mask policy was in the hands of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

‘We’re always going to follow the guidance of our health and medical experts,’ Psaki said. 

President Joe Biden and his officials have take to calling COVID ‘a pandemic of the unvaccinated’ as they urge Americans to get their shot.

‘We have a pandemic for those who haven’t gotten a vaccination,’ the president said this week at a CNN town hall meeting.

He said it was ‘gigantically important’ Americans get vaccinated.  

‘If you’re vaccinated, you’re not going to be hospitalized, you’re not going to be in the IC unit, and you’re not going to die,’ Biden said.

‘So it’s gigantically important that … we all act like Americans who care about our fellow Americans.’ 

Earlier, Biden had to walk back comments he made, insisting that Facebook ‘isn’t killing people’ and instead blamed them for allowing 12 people to spread the majority of online vaccine misinformation.

‘Facebook isn’t killing people,’ Biden clarified.

‘These 12 people are out there giving misinformation, anyone listening to it is getting hurt by it,’ he continued.

‘It’s killing people. It’s bad information.’

‘My hope is that Facebook, instead of taking it personally,’ Biden said, ‘that they would do something.’

Biden also assured ‘we are not in a battle with Facebook.’

Previously, when Biden was asked if he had a message for Facebook, he responded: ‘They’re killing people.

I mean it really. Look, the only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated. And they’re killing people.’

Facebook pushed back against that in a statement, lashing out at the administration for ‘blaming a handful of American social media companies’ for the declining vaccination rate.

‘While social media plays an important role in society, it is clear that we need a whole of society approach to end this pandemic,’ Facebook’s vice president of integrity, Guy Rosen, wrote in a corporate blog post.

COVID-19 cases have increased by 312 percent in Alabama over the past two weeks

COVID-19 cases have increased by 312 percent in Alabama over the past two weeks

COVID-19 cases have increased by 312 percent in Alabama over the past two weeks

Cases in Texas have grown by 162 percent over the past two weeks

Cases in Texas have grown by 162 percent over the past two weeks

Cases in Texas have grown by 162 percent over the past two weeks

Cases in Missouri have grown by 108 percent over the past two weeks

Cases in Missouri have grown by 108 percent over the past two weeks

Cases in Missouri have grown by 108 percent over the past two weeks

Cases in Florida have grown by 500 percent over the past two weeks

Cases in Florida have grown by 500 percent over the past two weeks

Cases in Florida have grown by 500 percent over the past two weeks

The Delta variant, a highly contagious strain of the virus that originated in India, accounts for more than of active cases 

Missouri, Florida and Texas now account for 40 percent of current cases nationwide, White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients said Thursday.

He noted that those three have some of the lowest vaccination rates in the country with 41.4 percent, 48 percent and 43 percent of residents fully-vaccinated, respectively. 

‘For the second week in a row, one in five of all cases occurring in Florida alone.

And within communities, these cases are primarily among unvaccinated people,’ he said.

In Ivey’s state of Alabama – where only 42 percent of residents are fully vaccinated – daily new cases have increased by 312 percent over the past two weeks, from 275 on July 8 to 1,133 on July 22. 

Zients noted, however, that several states with the highest proportion of new infections – including Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Missouri and Nevada – are now finally beginning to see their vaccination rates rise faster than the nation as a whole – a sign that the threat of the fourth wave is finally hitting home.

In the past week more than two million Americans received their first dose of a vaccine – a 14 percent increase from the week prior.   

Florida in particular accounts for nearly 20 percent of active cases.

The state recorded 12,647 new cases on Wednesday, the highest total the state has recorded since the massive winter wave of the virus.

Cases in the state have grown by nearly 500 percent in the past two weeks, with a seven day average of 1,493 new cases on July 6, and 8,912 on July 20.

A majority of the cases are among the unvaccinated as well. 

‘If you look at the people that are being admitted to hospitals …

over 95 percent of them are either not fully vaccinated or not vaccinated at all,’ Governor Ron DeSantis said Wednesday. 

‘These vaccines are saving lives. They are reducing mortality.’  

While DeSantis is a supporter of the vaccines, he has previously opposed vaccine mandates, even banning the use of vaccine passport in his state.

Florida has the most vaccinated population of any state in the south, though, with 56 percent of residents having received at least one shot of the virus. 

The Indian Delta variant, a highly contagious strain of the virus that originated in the south Asian nation, accounts for more than of active cases in the state as well.  

In the past week more than two million Americans received their first vaccine dose - a 14 percent increase from the week prior

In the past week more than two million Americans received their first vaccine dose - a 14 percent increase from the week prior

In the past week more than two million Americans received their first vaccine dose – a 14 percent increase from the week prior

Missouri was one of the first states to get hammered by the new, Delta Variant led, COVID surge sweeping across the nation.

The southwestern region of the state in particular was hammered at the start of this month.

Mercy Health and CoxHealth in Springfield, Missouri, the biggest city in the region, both were swamped with cases over July 4 weekend.

Mercy in particular even faced ventilator shortages.

Missouri’s situation has only gotten worse since then as well.

Cases have more than doubled over the past two weeks, from 1,077 average new daily cases on July 8 to 2,244 average new cases on July 22 – a 108 percent increase.  

of active cases in the state are of the Delta variant.  

Many cases in the state can also be tied to , a small tourist destination is the southwest of the state without a mask mandate.

Missouri has a vaccination rate of 47 percent, a figure that Republican Governor Mike Parson is trying to raise.

On Tuesday, Parson announced that Missouri would become the latest state to launch a vaccine lucky lottery numbers.

 

What about your boss, Jen? Psaki promises to continue ‘fighting’ ‘misinformation’ after Biden falsely told CNN town hall ‘you’re not going to get COVID if you have vaccinations’ and struggled to explain FDA approval

The White House said on Friday it would continue to tackle COVID-19 misinformation online amid growing criticism that the Biden administration is turning itself into the ultimate arbiter of what is and what is not true.

Officials last week admitted flagging problem posts to Facebook and Democrats are pushing a bill that would put the Department of Health and Human Services in charge of labeling online misinformation.

‘What we’re going to continue to do is make the vaccine available, we’re going to continue to work in partnership to fight misinformation and we’re going to continue to advocate and work in partnership with local officials and entrusted voices to get  the word out,’ said President Biden’s press secretary Jen Psaki in response to a question about the role of federal government in tackling the pandemic.

Experts in online manipulation say the strategy is wrongheaded and the impact of misinformation is exaggerated. 

And if the Biden administration needed needed a crash course in the pitfalls of policing vaccine misinformation it came at Wednesday night’s televised town hall. 

Three times factcheckers called the president out for making misleading statements, most notably in saying: ‘You’re not going to get COVID if you have these vaccinations,’ even as his own White House deals with ‘breakthrough’ cases of infection among staff. 

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