Despite ongoing efforts, it appears President Joe Biden is unlikely to achieve his vaccination goal for July 4 as rates of vaccination plummet.
Biden outlined plans in March that would allow Americans to be “closer to normal” by July 4, which included opening up vaccines to every adult by May 1 and launching a website to help Americans find a vaccine site. The goal was also set for 70% of Americans to at least be partially vaccinated.
While Biden set the mark for Independence Day, he did caution that Americans should listen to White House senior medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci and get the jab.
“I need you to get vaccinated when it’s your turn, and when you can find an opportunity,” Biden said in March. “And to help your family, your friends, your neighbors get vaccinated as well.”
“Because here’s the point – if we do all of this, if we do our part, if we do this together, by July the 4th, 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 and a barbecue and celebrate Independence Day.”
With Independence Day fast approaching, Biden would need approximately 15.5 million adults to receive at least their first dose in the next four weeks to reach his goal, according to The Associated Press. While nearly 2 million Americans were taking the jab per day nearly two months ago, that number has sharply decreased to below 400,000 people per day, according to the AP.
While nationwide the picture appears grim, data shows individual states are faring far better than others.
In 13 states, at least 70% of their population is vaccinated, while another 15 states, including Washington D.C., have more than 60% of individuals vaccinated, according to The Washington Post. Other states, however, are weighing down Biden’s efforts, such as Mississippi in which roughly 34% of their population is vaccinated, according to the AP.
White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients called on governors to pull “put all the stops” in order to get Americans vaccinated while speaking on a conference call Tuesday, according to the AP. (RELATED: ‘Joints For Jabs’: State Allows Weed Retailers To Give Out Free Joints To Vaccinated Customers)
“We need your leadership on the ground – which is where it matters the most – more than ever,” he reportedly said.
The White House, governors and local businesses have ramped up efforts in recent weeks to incentivize Americans to get the jab. West Virginia is raffling off five custom-made hunting rifles and five custom-made shotguns to any resident who has received at least one of their COVID-19 shots. The state is also giving any resident between the ages of 16-35 a $100 savings bond if they get the jab.
Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is raffling off 50 four-year scholarships for any public state university for youngsters who get the vaccine.
Since announcing #OhioVaxAMillion, @OHDeptofHealth has collected around 1 million entries and preliminary data shows that vaccination rates continue to grow! Vaccinated Ohioans can enter to win at https://t.co/Svppf9cYKe or 833-4-ASK-ODH. #InThisTogetherOhio pic.twitter.com/DPL2lPhHVn
— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) May 20, 2021