Shortly after Joe Biden entered the Oval Office, Biden administration sources told CNN that the new administration had to build an entire vaccine distribution system “from scratch.” Anthony Fauci, chief medical advisor to Biden and a former COVID-19 advisor to President Donald Trump, immediately contradicted this claim, noting that the Trump administration did important work to facilitate the vaccine distribution. It seems Vice President Kamala Harris didn’t get the memo, however.
In an Axios interview aired on Sunday, Harris repeated the claim that Fauci himself had already debunked.
“There’s no stockpile… of vaccines,” Harris told Axios co-founder Mike Allen. “There was no national strategy or plan for vaccinations, we were leaving it to the states and local leaders to try and figure it out. And so in many ways, we are starting from scratch on something that’s been raging for almost an entire year.”
.@VP Harris: "There was no national strategy or plan for vaccinations. … We're starting from scratch."@mikeallen: Are you having to adjust your sights now of what’s possible, given that?@VP: "We've gotta figure out a way. … No patience for, 'It can't be done.'" #AxiosOnHBO pic.twitter.com/opif5rjg96
— Axios (@axios) February 15, 2021
Fauci himself had contradicted this claim on January 21, 2021, the second day of Biden’s administration.
“We’re certainly not starting from scratch, because there is activity going on in the distribution,” Fauci told reporters in the White House briefing room. “We’re coming in with fresh ideas, but also some ideas that were not bad ideas with the previous administration. You can’t say it was absolutely not usable at all.”
“It’s taking what’s going on, but amplifying it in a big way,” Fauci added.
While the COVID-19 vaccine distribution left a great deal to be desired — under both Trump and Biden — the Trump administration deserves tremendous and historic credit for Operation Warp Speed, the public-private partnership responsible for the development of vaccines in record time.
During and after the 2020 presidential campaign, Biden, Harris, and their defenders have crafted a narrative that Trump failed to address the COVID-19 pandemic. In reality, the Trump administration achieved a great deal, most notably on the vaccine front. Yet it seems that both the Biden administration and the legacy media have committed themselves to a narrative of Trump failure and Biden success, regardless of the facts.
Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.