tv White House Press Secretary Holds Briefing CSPAN July 26, 2021 7:16pm-8:01pm EDT
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[background noises] [background noises] [background noises] >> okay. today i want to start by providing a brief note on where we are with our battle against the pandemic at home. first, taking a step back. in december the percentage of americans willing to get a shot was in the 30s. we now have 70% of adults, almost 70% of adult americans who have been vaccinated. that is a positive step forward. it is encouraging sign to us we can get more people vaccinated.
where we are today signals we made a pretty incredible progress with a vaccination effort. 60% of americans are fully vaccinated in 80% theaters nearly 90% of teachers and got a shot. 95% plus of physicians have been fully vaccinated the second week and wrote last year the case rate arkansas florida, louisiana texas and california had a higher rate of people getting vaccinated compared to the national average again positive trend. nearly half a million americans made the decision to get the first shots. numbers like the signal to us are understand the urgency and rightfully so. fairly thin number of time what her 62 plus million americans are fully vaccinated. them a very strong degree of protection against the variance for the overwhelmingly having illness hospitalization critically
important death. vaccinated individuals account for nearly all of the hospitalizations in the united states. data out from the united kingdom which has experienced its own surge in cases driven by delta show hospitalization rates down 73% compared to december when they were nearly identical case rates but almost no vaccinations. that means and protects from hospitalizations in the united kingdom which is a positive sign projects are down 93%. further proof getting fully vaccine is the best thing anyone can do to protect themselves and those around them. at the same time, we are seeing a significant rise in cases in certain parts of the country in certain populations. they are constant primarily in overwhelmingly among the unvaccinated. we are hearing if you all are reporting on stories of those not getting vaccinated. some of those like the radio host in tennessee are saying from their hospital bed they plan to be a strong advocate for the vaccine after
recovering from severe illness because of covid. we do not want that to be the breaking point for anybody. but we are seeing that across the country. and so again the reality is it is preventable. we welcome peoples from the country about their vaccines and efficacy. we care about these people as with people in local communities. but i wanted to provide a quick update with other good questions, go ahead. reporter: doctor fauci said yesterday recommending vaccinated wear masks is under consideration purchase one where things stand with that conversation. considering the administration is not moving at the moment to lift the restrictions on travel because of the delta variance. is the administration there are some places like the uk. >> first, i would say for any of these recommendations we
are always going to be guided by our northstar that is the cdc in health and medical experts. having an active it would actually be surprising and odd if our health and medical experts not having an active discussion about how to best protect the american people. there is of course an active discussion a range of steps that can be taken as there has been from the first day of the administration. certainly the surgeon cases a month on vaccine because the delta variance prompt even more discussion of what action can be taken. but the cdc looks at data. they look at data across the country in a range of regions across the country. if they make an assessment we will be a course be here to father guidance. reporter: [inaudible] was the president going there and how much of this is about
sending the previous president that were less than flattering that the intelligence community. subject let's let's go back to your last question about the travel restrictions i just want to confirm it. given to where we've been and those have asked to confirm this with the delta variant we will maintain existing travel restrictions at this point for a few reasons. the more transmissible delta variant is spreading both here and around the world driven by the delta variant cases arising here at home particularly among those who are unvaccinated and appear likely to continue in the weeks ahead. to get to the other part of your question is cdc given the past monday they will evaluate and make recommendations based on health data. your question about the president's visit to od and i tomorrow to see the director of national intelligence,
first woman to lead the intelligence community and history i'll just note part yes i think the president will go there to receive an update on their work. also to thank them for their work during what has been no doubt a challenging time for members of the intelligence community over the last several years. someone who believes in the role of the intelligence community of civil servants but he believes they are the backbone of government. and certainly he will make that clear. you can all make the inherent contras that will not be the essential point of his question tomorrow. go ahead. >> doctor fauci confirmed yesterday he is of us the part of the discussion. as president biden part of the discussions as well regarding whether to bring back the recommendation? and or any of his economic divide advice to understand who is making the decision? >> the president receives
regular updates ms. covid team. but the guidance and discussions are privately between the health and medical experts on how we should proceed from here to address the rising cases from the delta variant month on vaccinated. >> what are the pros and cons for re- recommending masks? >> we do not look at it through that prism. we do not make these decisions or recommendations based on politics. they make them based on data. it is quite simple they look at data across the country, they make a determination about what steps they could recommend to protect more people and save more lives. and then, if they make the recommendation of a scene over the past several months will work to implement it. it is not more complicated than that. at recent days there been several u.s. air strikes. [inaudible] after the deadline august 31 they continue to support
afghan forces? >> said would maintain around i don't have any updates. >> group of healthcare professionals are saying they should beat mandates for all who work in healthcare system to be vaccinated. their local communities bringing back mandates and recommendations of eight looking to professional organizations, businesses and local officials for guidance on things to do more than the federal government at this point? >> first i would say we would hope the guidance. there will be localities with higher rates of outbreaks that may make additional recommendations for they may take steps to keep their community safe. we certainly have seen, as you noted their institutions including across the health industry, so many of you have
seen 57 leading healthcare groups including the american medical system the american college of physicians, the american colony of pediatricians all call for healthcare and long-term care employees to mandate employees be vaccinated against covid read thus the healthcare industry where they are very much on the front lines. these actions, in our view are meant to keep patients and employees safe. in fact expect their own federal healthcare providers may look at similar requirements as they do with other vaccines as it relates to what the american people should look too. look, the cdc is looking data across the country. they provide broad health guide is not based on politics and they make updates when nay feels necessary to make updates then localities will apply that. reporter: would that be make in the similar recommendation or requirement? >> i think there will be more to say in the coming days on
that, kelly. i will tell you i certainly believe health officials are of the front lines being vulnerable. we certainly support this by the hospital association. >> it's buried at the nfl with that close the gap in your review with some who have not done so for a variety of reasons? do you see this as another leveler that might be havel to the president's goal? >> it may. beyond the president's goal at may save lives. that is the most important factor in our view. and so we are seeing institutions, healthcare providers, colleges and universities, the nfl implement different approaches and steps to incentivize and increase vaccination rates. the more people are vaccinated, the more the country with air travelers
domestically with faa regulations for long time. that is set to expire in december. should we anticipate that would stay in place given the delta variance? i don't get ahead of the guidance by the cdc doctor fauci said we are going in the wrong direction for it whose fault is that? >> i would say first what he was referring to is the fact that because there is still a large population of people in this country who are unvaccinated with the most transmissible variants that we have seen since the beginning of the pandemic, that more people are getting sick with covid. that is not -- those numbers are not living in the right direction. i believe that's accurate you can see it by data. >> it has been more than a month since a comprehensive strategy to prevent and respond to gun crime and
ensure public safety made this bigoted chicago 73 people shot. eleven of them were killed. >> when there have been rising crime rates across the country and can for 18 months or more that unfortunately the department of justice has a group in there to help address the transmitting or the selling of guns that are getting in the hands of people who shot have them. they have benefited a huge amount from the federal assistance included in the american rescue plan. our hope is we can work in partnership to bring crime down, save more people in cities like chicago we know gun violence is a big driver of that. >> after a few shootings here they blamed some of the crime on marijuana dealers. the marijuana laws of loosened
up in the white house thanks it might be time to get tougher? >> because we look to the crime wonderworking close partnership and strike forces as well as our community violence were looking to address a range of causes of work in close partnership with the mayor and local police to bring crime down in our city. : : he continues to support speaker pelosi leadership about work including her decision to appoint republican members similarly committed to this
objective so in his and our field tomorrow will be an opportunity to hear first-hand from the men and women in capitol please and metropolitan police department who protected our capitol that day. his quote is the same speaker pelosi has we just to get to the bottom of what happened and prevented from happening in the future and he trusts her leadership to do that. >> we be watching i think -- >> he typically has a packed schedule and captures some clips sometimes they are featured in them and i'm sure he will be kept with the rest of the hearing and what's happening on the hill tomorrow. >> we are hearing from health experts who are increasingly voicing for fda approval into the covid vaccines as to why they haven't yet -- what is your understanding for why we have
not seen for the any convictions of what it might be? >> that is the gold standard in our view and they meet up the speed of signs and look at data and make sure when they make conclusions and give full approval they have confidence in the science and data that backs it up. it wouldn't be responsible to expedite that process at a faster speed than science and data allows. everyone is eager as a mother of two children and 12 myself, about vaccines approved to get my kids vaccinated. understand that completely and understand the desire to have full approval as well. we are hopeful to see that in the coming months. doctor fauci has set but again we rely on them to determine their own timeline. [inaudible] time of waiting for approval is what keeps so many from getting vaccinated? >> with is most important that
they maintain themselves as the gold standard and improving use of vaccines for approval and the fact that they are always going to be proven by the speed of science they will have extensive data they look at and they will have the best health and medical expert making that conclusion. that will maintain confidence over the long-term. of course we want to seek vaccines fully approved vaccines for under 12-year-old, i think most americans would say that but it's important they move at the speed of scientists. >> i wanted to ask you about teenager, the president dismissed the parliament, most of the government and it's been denounced by the party, because the white see that as a coup? >> first we are concerned about the development as the authorities there are speaking to stabilize the economy and the covered pandemic and improve
living standards for all of them. we are in touch at a senior level from the white house and state department with cds in theaters to learn more about the situation and effort to move forward with democratic principles. as you know and as you asked about, there's not a lot of department even the last 24 hours legal determination about a two, it's a legal determination and we will look at the state department to conduct a legal analysis before making that determination. >> i just want to ask about the embassy in tunis which handles a lot of business for the region including libya, any change as far as operations there? >> i've not been made aware of changes but that's a decision made by the state department based on their diplomatic security and advice on the ground. >> on a different issue, people talk about covered and some of the impacts of the search we are seeing, there might be economic
impacts we've seen -- [inaudible] [inaudible question] [inaudible question] >> i think an important piece to note, the way the american rescue plan was designed was for it to have lasting effects that would go over a series of several month far beyond the initial months implementation so there are components of the american rescue plan still being implemented that will still be implemented for months to come from a is a lesson we've learned from the past how people who need assistance for a longer period of time and just a short window. i would note areas we've seen data on the market where there are, and impact, economic impact on people being able to stay in rental properties are in their homes.
there is continued implementation, i think you are familiar with these but i was not them, including all the forbearance program we've implemented in recent months where people will be able to apply, is an example because i think houses is a big impact of the economy, people can supply apply through september for six months and even longer. there are number of programs from the child tax credit which we started incrementing in monthly checks but there still a benefit through next year part of the american rescue plan that we will continue to ferment. i would also say that comes to the economy a significant weight according to our partners at this time the delta variant impacts across the country we would expect much of economic impacts will be felt in the communities with lower vaccination rates and white we double down on efforts to ensure we reach americans with the
vaccine where they are one of the notes i think our secretary of commerce made last week as well. one of the most newsom one important to get vaccinated. >> meeting in china, i know both sides basically came out of the meetings saying there were disagreements. what does it tell us about the ability for talks between them inviting? you said this template with russia even with disagreements will still have this so where is that do you still see it as likely? >> first, as it relates to the pharmacy, that is how we feel an important secretary sherman to go to beijing and have these meetings because it's important for us to stay directly to the
officials but we say in public it's in our interest to be clear about where we stand and explain our concerns in detail and our philosophy is we should not avoid hard topics and they are part of any discussion we have diplomatically. there are areas of concern and straightforward about whether it's a crackdown on hong kong hong kong, crimes against humanity there, curtailing media access and areas where we might align, the climate crisis, counter narcotics, nonproliferation, regional conference, a topic of the president continuing to leave and diplomacy, that is something he has long been an advocate for and we expect there will be opportunity to engage at some time but it has not come up in the context of these meetings and that was not the purpose of the meetings. outgrow around the room. >> does the president favor restrictions for unvaccinated people when it comes to restaurants, museums, concert?
>> the president favors using the cdc as a northstar and with the help and medical experts will advise to save more lives and protect people. >> so he doesn't think there should be restrictions on unvaccinated people like other countries? >> he believes we should be guided by the size and data so he will look to the medical team to advise on what steps we should take. >> what will a number of u.s. forces see the end of this year? >> it's important to note that this is a series of strategic dialogues or an ongoing strategic dialogue the early part of the strategic dialogue we had about 9000 troops and how about 2500 u.s. forces in iraq, iraq's invitation to improve iraq's security forces and pop
them in the fight against isis but the real announcement today were real news today i should say, it's about a change of mission and the numbers will be driven by what's needed the mission over time so it's more about moving to a more advising and training capacity from what we had over the last several years. >> regardless of the title what their mission is, what we -- [inaudible] >> i would say the most important part is it's a change in mission the mission is changing in iraq and it will be driven by what's needed for the mission so i'm not going to give operational details, i would show department of defense on that but the first step is change in mission, and of combat role in iraq and moving to a train, advise and assist role is what the leadership there as conveyed they want to see on the ground. >> to covered related russians, one on mandates which we are seeing already, more kind of places whether local authorities
or universities, how much does the president at the people around the president fear that his weighing in more heavily to embrace mandates by other institutions or mandate federal government on federal workers, how much do you fear that it's culture war counterproductive and people have opposition to the idea taking a vaccination because the president is more than it actually is counterproductive? >> i think that important and that we look, we do not want to look at our objective of getting more people vaccinated for a political presence, we don't. the president certainly recognizes he's not always the right voice to every community about the benefits of getting vaccinated which is why we have invested as much as we have in local voices and empowering local trusted voices.
i would say about that mandates, as evidenced by the hospital's association, those are meant to keep people safe across the country, we're not going to judge our success hereby whether we score political points, whereunto judged by whether we are able to save more lives and if the health and medical experts suggest that is the right way then we will support that. >> on the travel extension band, is it an indefinite exception? given the concern about delta in the u.s. to keep those in place for now, does that suggest 42 at the southern border is equally likely to be extended at least for now given the same concerns with the delta virus. >> nothing is indefinite because obviously our objective defeat
the virus. but i don't have the time i to predict because it's all about success we have in getting more people vaccinated vaccines to the world and fighting the virus. we've never conveyed or announced a timeline for title 42 so nothing has changed in that regard, it remains in place and will remain in place as long as that is the guidance from health and medical experts. >> i have a question from infrastructure there is a robust party going on this morning over the season over negotiations, i'm wondering if the white house is concerned it will not finalize a deal and how much time is president dragon willing to give the negotiators? >> as is normal in the end stages of negotiations, there is some outstanding issues, democrats made an offer designed to resolve these issues involving proposed compromises on our part and theirs. as we always are, we are in
close touch with republicans and democrats and prominent, we remain confident about reaching an agreement and we are interested in any republicans counter offers so i would say it's to be expected, we always know there is some wrangling at the end of the process. i would tell you also white house staff and negotiators work through the weekend as i think many of you know, the president worked phones all weekend and is continuing to. we are encouraged as we reach mental issues that need to be worked out, they are covered about the path forward so yes, time is not in this, we are on a timeline here and we will work closely with peter schumer to get it done. >> in question. >> they've certainly showed we are needing to move forward and we are focused on moving forward and we continue to seek each day. >> is there any discussion the white house and why president
biden is given a booster shot. >> would rely on the expertise of our health and medical experts in fact not a guidance they are providing at this time. >> i know you said a lot about being guided by science, can you talk a little bit about the science matters driving the continuation of this travel ban, the delta variant is already dominant in the u.s. so how is that for people in the u.s.? >> i'm not a doctor or medical expert, therapist opposed to the cdc or one of our doctors but i think their decision was made based on the fact that the delta variant is more transmissible and spreading around the world. yes, it's a dominant variant here in the u.s. but that doesn't mean having more people who have the delta parent is the
right step. also we see cases rising here at home particularly among those undocumented immigrants they base their decisions on data, health and medical expertise in a consideration of range of factors including keeping the american people safe. >> the scientists are making decisions and medical experts, the cdc making decisions like who is making the decisions? and also on a separate issue, when it comes to the issues of voting rights, police reform, there are civil rights groups, voting rights groups expressing frustration with how they feel not getting a priority they feel they should be especially because of the rhetoric from the president saying this is taking the country back and at some of the biggest issues and yet they
feel like there has not been pressure to get something done, something tangible to get something done from the white house, what is your response to that frustration? >> the president is also frustrated. he wants to sign a voting rights bill into law and police reform in to law. he believes both are long overdue and requires congress moving forward on these pieces of legislation and send them to his desk. the role he can play his spoken out publicly about multiple times and advocated for how this is a fundamental right and people should have voting rights across the country and works in close coordination with civil rights groups and partnerships and he has conveyed to them that i will convey publicly he's with them and stands with them at their frustration and you that it's a final step that he needs congress to send him legislation to sign into law.
>> hi -- >> sorry, right here. >> [inaudible question] >> the iran militia announcing this withdrawal later today. >> i think we feel this is a natural next step in these ongoing strategic dialogues and we are moving to a phase not where we are and think our partnership, we are maintaining a presence in iraq in a different mission. in coordination with leadership, iraq he leadership and one where we feel we can continue to be constructive writing isis and dangerous threat from iranian
praxis so it's a chip, not a removal of partnership or presence or close engagement with iraqi leaders. >> why has the president not nominated someone for fda commissioner get? >> he is eager to nominate someone, he wants to make sure we have the right person to nominate and he's not going to do at a pace faster than having the right person to. reporter: >> has white house had any officials test positive for covid-19? >> our policy, just to reiterate, if there is an individual who has close proximity to any of the four principles as defined by the white house medical unit in line with cdc guidelines on what it looks like been we will make that information available and immediately public to all of you so that has not been the case. >> real quick, i know would ask you a number of times about mask recommendations for the vaccinated but i know you have said overwhelming majority of the cases are in people vaccinated -- or unvaccinated
but what is the level of concern about infections in people who are vaccinated? we keep hearing reports of vaccinated people, hospitals say their patients are vaccinated coming in, what is the level of concern? >> i think we all have responsibility to be clear about the data and what it says and what it does not say. 97% hospitalizations are with people unvaccinated. that remains the case. the data from the health and medical experts still continue to be that if you were vaccinated, you are protected and it's very, very unlikely that you will get sick hospitalized as a result of getting a breakthrough case. that remains the case in data, of course there are individual cases and we expect breakthrough cases and there will be. more people vaccinated, the more as a percentage of individuals
vaccinated who will get covered but them (think is that people across the country are largely protected from serious illness if they are vaccinated. >> so 97% number, the cdc access fact from january to april so when you look at how many people have been vaccinated since then at the delta variant, why isn't there anymore updated information from the cdc about the risk now two people who are vaccinated? >> i can see what their circle of data is, who rely on data across the country, not individual anecdotal cases reported because sometimes they scare the public without being based on broad swaths of information about the public should look at and look at the whole assessment of i think you have seen across the country again at hospital leaders have set this, to the number of cases and people coming and, the vast majority are people not vaccinated and that continues to
be the case from hospital across the country but i am happy to see if there is more updated data available or when it might be available, too. >> i want to go to back to the vaccine mandate, has it been determined if it's inappropriate for illegals, to require federal employees for military to be vaccinated? >> it's not determined that it would be illegal but we have not made a determination about that, no. >> why not? the president referred to write about muslim employees after largest single employer of america, why couldn't the federal government demonstrate to the country model you're talking about? >> we will see if it's proven for the government to look at any steps just like any employer of how we can incentivize people get vaccinated, protect more people, save more lives, i just don't have anything to preview at this time. >> thank you. >> does the administration view
vaccine misinformation as a security threat? on top of that, is there any indication there are actors leading misinformation vaccines? >> i talk about this little in the past, i'm not going to give it a new label but i will tell you is that certainly misinformation is a factor, it travels, some on social media, some on media, some through elected officials or public voices, unfortunately sometimes all that is connected to each other. that is a concern, a significant concern for us hence we spoken out against that. most the last part of your question? >> i want to know if the administration has seen fingerprints of any mall actors such as vladimir putin speaking through misinformation. >> i set i think maybe last week or the week before we did see something of immense of misinformation around the effectiveness of mrna vaccines
previously from foreign actors but i don't think we have a broader assessment yet. >> i want to ask about administration having any nominee -- >> i know there's a lot of interest, i don't have any updates on that. >> i was wondering if you have an update for u.s. citizens overseas have been patiently waiting to get vaccinated. you suggest they fly back to the united states or wait in the countries they are living in? for the embassies do anything more to assist them or vaccines given to countries, should they be obligated for americans? remark that is a question, a good one. we have not been working on this that i am aware of through embassies and programs with american citizens. let me check with the state
department and our corporate team to see if there's more on that. >> you said a couple of times, can you talk about if he's concern for cdc might take mask mandates or vaccine mandates in cities like new york and vaccine mandates? >> it's important to take a step back and remember we are talking about here, the cdc evaluates data from across the country and will make public health guidance and present public health guidance and do the on regular periodic basis and will continue and we are always considering a range of options as we have been from the beginning of the administration, of course, as we should be. they do not make block. it's a guidance currently if you're not vaccinated you should wear a mask, is the guidance currently if you're over 12 years old, you should get vaccinated and regardless, the most effective steps we can take around the country to get more people vaccinated so that's
where focus needs to be regardless of what the cdc may or may not land on additional guidance. >> vaccine mandates would be of big step toward getting more people vaccinated, i'm wondering organizations nearly six coming out in sync with at least mandate healthcare workers being vaccinated, rising the white house behind back? >> i think we just set support the steps they took. the cdc is not determined mandates, the cdc provides public health guidance on what saves people's lives. getting vaccinated can save people's lives. >> is it fair to say does the white house see -- you are saying now yes there should be mandates specifically for healthcare workers or teachers or municipal workers, the white house see it as a role they should take, is there any danger not doing that? >> i think i set a few minutes ago we support the steps of hospitals and that was a guide and could be a guide for us on what to do with our own health
care workforce from the federal government just to give you a sense. i would also note 90% of teachers across the country are vaccinated and that is in part because of prioritizing teachers early. a number of them taking responsible steps, 90% of the to get vaccinated chemotherapy up to schools and localities. there are certain powers the federal government has and certain powers the federal government does not have but we are talking about a couple things here. one is public health guidance by the cdc which will be by debt and gives guidance. the loss will be implemented by others, they do not make laws or give public health guidance. their decisions by institutions, localities, hospital systems who make me decisions how to protect their workforces. we certainly support that. >> i know you said -- you're not could you talk more about what the president says about police testify before the committee and does he have somebody else could testify if his goal is the same
as speaker pelosi? >> certainly he relies on the leadership of speaker pelosi and moving this process and independent investigation forward into the individuals will be testifying for brave heroes on this day, a dark date on democracy, the president believes that. it's noteworthy that many republicans in congress the most vocal about supportively porting police of the same ones who dismissed and downplayed the simple offense at that day. i don't think that should be lost on anyone either especially given 140 individuals were injured that day, 100 law enforcement officers were injured that day according to their statistics i think we have to wrap because you have to go and see the iraqi prime minister. thank you, everyone. [inaudible conversations]
>> coming up tonight on c-span2 on the communicators. shapiro, president and chief executive officer of the consumer technology association talking about major technology issues facing congress and the biden administration. the washington post hosts a conversation with louisville kentucky aircraft shields on public safety in her city. after that, presley sits down with the former mayor of san juan puerto rico to share thoughts about how women can use their forces to affect change in a post- pandemic america. ♪♪ >> c-span is your unfiltered view of government funded by
these television companies and more including charter communications. ♪♪ >> charter communications supports c-span as a public service along with these other television providers giving a front row seat to democracy. >> gary shapiro is president and ceo of the consumer technology association which puts on annual consumer electronic show, in las vegas. gary, will you be in las vegas live in 2022? >> we think to be but i want to thank you, i've been on your show over a thousand times and as we go forward, you will always be in my mind and have a