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Robert Weiner

WASHINGTON, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, UNITED STATES, December 3, 2020 / -- In a Washington Times op-ed just out, former Clinton White House spokesman Robert Weiner and policy analyst Ben Lasky urge Joe Biden to credit President Trump for his work on Operation Warp Speed. Doing so could both bring the country together and motivate more people to take the vaccine now that it is becoming available soon under emergency authorizations. With at least a 90% threshold to get to herd immunity, getting people to buy in and get vaccinated will be critical to ending the pandemic.

Weiner and Lasky begin, “If Joe Biden wants to succeed with his bipartisanship, get Republicans to cooperate, protect the nation from resurgences of the Covid-19 virus, and help the economy roar back, here’s a plan: Do a major speech including giving Trump credit for the vaccine’s Operation Warp Speed to develop and distribute it. Trump deserves credit, because his (in this case) proper compulsiveness to get it done at record speed and pre-manufacture massive numbers of doses, merits credit from all sides.”

They continue, “Now, for the good of the Nation, in this speech, forget the early denials causing delays in prevention mechanisms like masks, not using the Defense Production Act for PPE’s, and blocking the CDC, FDA and OSHA from guidelines for transparency and protections in nursing homes and meat plants. This is a time to motivate the country, nearly half of which Gallup polling says will not accept the vaccine as of now. Yet NIH Director Francis Collins asserts the vaccine ‘can be trusted’ and would save ‘hundreds of thousands of lives.’ We can and must work together to allay virus fears and not play politics.”

They explain, “This is a time for Republicans and Democrats to come together for the health of the nation and the world.”

They assert, “If Biden does give Trump Credit, what can Trump do? Say, ‘See, Biden gave me credit?’ Or ‘Don’t do it, because Biden said to?’ Now, even President Trump can come aboard, and Republican anti-Biden forces could too, on this issue, for the good of the country.”

Weiner and Lasky go on, “If he carries it out, Biden would be doing exactly what he called for in his campaign, bringing everyone together. As we move forward to distribution of the vaccine, the first Emergency Use Authorization is expected in days. Moderna, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, and AstraZeneca’s authorization could come shortly.”

They write, “The biggest worry about the vaccine is that enough people won’t take it to provide ‘herd immunity.’ With the early data showing 90-95% effectiveness (and in some of the most severe cases, 100%), that would be a big mistake.”

They point out, “The way we get to herd immunity is through a vaccine because the population is protected from the virus instead of exposed to it.”

They found that “the Mayo Clinic, in a white paper on ‘Herd Immunity and Covid 19’, said the greater the percent immune, ‘and the vaccine is an excellent way’ to achieve it-- the greater the herd immunity. Mayo uses the model of Measles and says 94% is ‘herd immunity.’”

They continue, “It’s imperative to reach herd immunity through a vaccine because if enough people are immune, it becomes much harder for those who are not immune to catch the virus. President Trunp has been striving for Covid 19 herd immunity for months-- and now both sides could make it actually happen, by their powerful bully pulpits.”

Weiner and Lasky conclude, “Joe Biden says bipartisanship is needed in America. We believe he's serious about it. He could mobilize it against the virus by a simple giving of credit as a way to motivate everyone to get the vaccine regardless of politics and protect themselves and the nation.”

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Robert Weiner and Ben Lasky
Weiner Public News
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