Yesterday, an inexplicable pause was put on the Johnson and Johnson vaccine by the Biden administration (see COVID Vaccination Program in Disarray as CDC and FDA Order Halt to Using Johnson and Johnson Vaccine). This was supposedly done out of an “abundance of caution” due to six people out of almost seven million doses suffering from blood clots. Yes, that’s six people, as in single digits, out of millions of people. The risks of not getting the vaccine and dying of COVID, especially for those in certain age ranges, are obviously much higher, but little of Biden’s messaging and decision-making on the vaccines have made sense.
Keeping that theme going, the president responded to a question about the matter yesterday in what Psaki insists are “Q and A” sessions. In reality, it’s Biden taking a single question and giving a quick, few-second answer. What followed was more incoherence, and it’s just making matters worse.
President Biden on Johnson & Johnson vaccine: "There is enough vaccine that is basically 100 unquestionable for every single solitary American." pic.twitter.com/KKrNo3njTz
— CSPAN (@cspan) April 13, 2021
To start, no vaccine is “100 unquestionable” (I’m assuming he meant 100% there, but his mind and all that). I’m not saying that to make an anti-vax argument. I’m saying that to say that people should just be told that there is no perfect vaccine, nor is there ever going to be zero risks involving COVID on any level. In other words, Biden shouldn’t be lying about the vaccines to defend his really stupid decision, but should instead be explaining to people that any risks that may exist with any of the vaccines are far outweighed by the risks of COVID itself. Instead, we get this incoherence where the president wants to try to make it seem like his administration’s decision to halt the Johnson and Johnson vaccine is defensible, and it’s simply not.
Past that, we don’t actually know if what he’s saying there about supply is true. Yes, at some point in the future, via more production, there will be enough vaccine for every American. But will the Johnson and Johnson pause slow that timeframe down? Biden doesn’t say and the media certainly aren’t going to ask. Remember, the Johnson and Johnson shot is one dose, unlike the other vaccines. That’s why Michigan has been clamoring to get it. Now, Biden is saying no based on a completely unscientific standard of risk.
I’ll end by jumping into some conjecture. If this were Trump pausing vaccine distribution over six cases out of almost seven million doses given, he’d be accused of purposely trying to kill people. I’m not even kidding. That would absolutely happen. That’s how stupid and nonsensical the decision here was. Whoever is in charge of these decisions and the messaging that follows (because come on, it isn’t Biden himself) needs to be fired.