Biden Revisits His Interview Answer Declaring ‘The Pandemic Is Over’

President Joe Biden on Tuesday revised his recent comments in which he declared that the COVID-19 pandemic is over in the US

Speaking at a New York City fundraiser for two Democratic groups attended by celebrities including Robert De Niro, the president sounded reassuring about COVID-19, encouraging attendees to get vaccinated.

“By the way, if you haven’t gotten your boosters, get them,” Biden told the roughly 100 attendees, according to Bloomberg.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approved an updated booster shot targeting omicron, including the newer subvariants BA.4 and BA.5, earlier this month.

But the White House is concerned that Biden’s comments over the weekend could “complicate” efforts to vaccinate Americans this fall, according to Politico.

“We still have a problem with COVID. We’re still working hard on it … but the pandemic is over,” Biden told CBS’ “60 Minutes” in a segment that aired Sunday.

On Tuesday, Biden appeared to reframe those remarks, saying the United States is in a much better place to fight COVID-19 this time around.

“It’s basically not where it was,” he said of the pandemic, according to Bloomberg.

The United States has recorded more than 379,000 cases and 2,490 deaths in the past seven days through Tuesday, according to CDC data.

More than 67 percent of Americans have been fully vaccinated as of Sept. 14, according to the CDC.

Biden’s chief medical adviser, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said Monday that the intensity of the outbreak remains “unacceptably high.”

The president’s pandemic declaration over the weekend was met with trepidation by his Democratic colleagues, but also drew the attention of Republican lawmakers, who took the opportunity to question the need for additional funding for COVID -19.

“If it ends, I wouldn’t suspect they need more money,” Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told CNN.

Aside from COVID, however, Biden also talked politics at Tuesday’s fundraiser, repeating his warning that the top priority right now is the midterm elections in November.

“They take back the House and the Senate, we’re going to have a different world,” Biden said. “I will spend all my time with a veto pen.”

Democrats hope a string of legislative victories the party won this summer, including passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, as well as vulnerable Trump-endorsed Republican candidates running in key states, will help them prevail -se in the race for control of the Chamber and the Senate that normally favor the party out of power.

Also encouraging for Democrats is the drop in gas prices and the reversal of Roe v.

Polls show Democrats favored to hold the Senate, but still face an uphill battle in the House even as their odds have improved, according to polling aggregation website FiveThirtyEight.

The president is expected to deliver a speech to the UN General Assembly on Wednesday morning.

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