Biden Addresses the Nation Promising Hope and Vaccine Eligibility to Everyone by May 1
2 Million Vaccinations a Day
In his speech, Biden pulled out a card that he says he always carries with the cumulative number of people who died from Covid.
Here's the Complete Transcript of his speech.
"I know it's been hard. I truly know. As I've told you before, I carry a card in my pocket with the number of Americans who have died from COVID to date. It's on the back of my schedule. As of now, total deaths in America, 527,726. That's more deaths than in World War I, World War II, the Vietnam War and 9/11 combined.
"My fellow Americans, you're owed nothing less than the truth. And for all of you asking when things will get back to normal, here is the truth. The only way to get our lives back, to get our economy back on track, is to beat the virus.
"Just 14% of Americans over the age of 75 -- 50 days ago had gotten their first shot. Today, that number is well over 70%. When I came into office you may recall I set a goal that many of you said was kind of way over the top. I said I intended to get 100 million shots in people's arms in my first 100 days in office. Tonight, I can say we're not only going to meet that goal, we're going to beat that goal. Because we're actually on track to reach this goal of 100 million shots in arms on my 60th day in office. No other country in the world has done this, none. And I want to talk about the next steps we're thinking about.
"First, tonight, I'm announcing that I will direct all states, tribes, and territories to make all adults, people 18 and over, eligible to be vaccinated no later than May 1. Let me say that again. All adult Americans will be eligible to get a vaccine no later than May 1. That's much earlier than expected. That doesn't mean everyone's going to have that shot immediately, but it means you'll be able to get in line beginning May 1.
"Fourth, in the coming weeks, we will issue further guidance on what you can and cannot do once fully vaccinated to lessen the confusion, to keep people safe, and encourage more people to get vaccinated. And, finally, fifth, and maybe most importantly, I promise I will do everything in my power. I will not relent until we beat this virus.
"But I need you, the American people. I need you. I need every American to do their part. And that's not hyperbole. I need you. I need you to get vaccinated when it's your turn and when you can find an opportunity. And to help your family, your friends, your neighbors get vaccinated as well. Because here's the point.
"If we do all this, if we do our part, if we do this together, by July the 4, there's a good chance you, your families and friends, will be able to get together in your backyard or in your neighborhood and have a cookout or a barbecue and celebrate Independence Day. That doesn't mean large events with lots of people together, but it does mean small groups will be able to get together.
If President Trump had given a speech with some of those ideas, and a lot of that empathy, he may have been reelected, perhaps even easily.
Of course, if he gave such a speech, he would not have been Trump.