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Biden rolls out ‘full-scale, wartime’ coronavirus strategy, including requiring masks on some planes, trains and buses.

  • January 21, 2021

Despite his repeated calls for unity, the new president took a shot at his predecessor, saying, “For the past year we couldn’t rely on the federal government to act with the urgency and focus and coordination that we needed, and we have seen the tragic cost of that failure.”

But the Biden plan is in some respects overly optimistic and in others not ambitious enough, some experts say. It is not clear how he will enforce the quarantine requirement. And his promise to inject 100 million vaccines in his first hundred days is aiming low, since those 100 days should see twice that number of doses available.

Mr. Biden bristled at a reporter’s question when he was asked if the goal should be for a higher number. “When I announced, you all said it’s not possible,” Mr. Biden said. “Come on, give me a break, man.”

Because the currently approved coronavirus vaccines require two doses, but some Americans have already had their first shots, Mr. Biden’s promise should cover 65 to 70 million Americans, said Scott Gottlieb, a former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration under Mr. Trump.

“I think we can reach that goal and probably reach higher, by focusing on how many people are being vaccinated for the first time each day,” Dr. Gottlieb said. With vaccines by Pfizer and Moderna already granted emergency approval and a third, by Johnson Johnson, likely to to be authorized soon, he said, “we can definitely reach many more patients.”

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