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tv   White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki Holds Briefing  CSPAN  July 6, 2021 6:46pm-7:50pm EDT

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more than 140 capitol police officers were injured and two people died during the push by demonstrators as they marched on the capital to stop the electoral count of the 2020 election. c-span is marking the anniversary by showing the first send hearing on what happened that day and why, tonight at 8:00 eastern. >> white house press secretary jen psaki on the biden administration's policy agenda. topics include u.s. troop withdrawal from afghanistan, vaccination efforts, and civil rights protections. this runs just over one hour.
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sec. psaki: ok. a couple of updates for you at the top. after the president is briefed by his covid-19 response team this afternoon, he will speak to the american people about the strong progress the country has made in recovery, because of its robust vaccination campaign. as well as the importance of every eligible american getting vaccinated, especially as the delta variant continues to grow among unvaccinated people across the country. by the end of the week, the u.s. will be nearing 160 million people fully vaccinated. which is critically important, as fully vaccinated people are protected against the delta variant. he stressed how the administration shall continue efforts to get americans vaccinated to make vaccines available and respond to hotspots. the president will outline five
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areas his team is focused on to get more americans vaccinated. one, targeted by community door-to-door outreach to get remaining americans vaccinated to ensure they have the information they need on how both safe and accessible the vaccine is. two, a renewed emphasis on getting the vaccines to more primary care doctors and physicians, something we've seen as a successful tactic with reaching groups with lower vaccination rates in the past few months. three, stepped up efforts, complete run through to my last point, to get vaccines to pediatricians and other providers who serve younger people, so adolescents aged 12 to 18 can get vaccinated as they
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go back to back to school checkups. make it accessible in areas we see as a challenge. setting up vaccination clinics at workplaces and pto so someone can take off to get vaccinated. finally, expanding our mobile clinic efforts and making sure we are taking the vaccine to communities. another covid update. this week, both guatemala and vietnam will be receiving covid vaccine doses from the biden-harris administration. guatemala will receive 1.5 million doses of moderna and vietnam will receive 2 million doses of moderna. as part of the president's executive order on competition, stay tuned. the u.s. department of agriculture announced that it will engage in a series of rulemakings to increase competition in agricultural industry. the president's executive order will follow through on a campaign promise by directing usda to issue new rules under
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the act, making it easier for farmers to bring in claims, adopting anti-retaliation protections for farmers to speak out about bad practices. it will direct the usda to issue new rules. so consumers have accurate transfer and labels that enables them to know where their food comes from and choose to support american farmers and ranchers. something i learned that i found a little outrageous is that under current labeling rules, most beef labeled products are actually raised and slaughtered abroad and imported to the u.s. for processing. we believe it is unfair for them i said farmers and ranchers to have to compete with foreign companies that are misleading
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consumers. develop a plan to increase opportunities for farmers, to access markerts, including supporting alternative for this tradition systems like farmers markets and developing standards and labels that consumers can choose to buy products to treat farmers and agricultural workers fairly. these are just a few examples of actions taken under the new executive order. and the entire federal government's mission will be moved forth with this executive order order will help increase opportunities for small independent businesses, boost earnings, and the work prices and create options for consumers. i have one more item. a number of you had asked me on the last trip i was on if we could do a little bit more to preview trips farther in advance. i will try to do that today. tomorrow, the president will travel to crystal lake, illinois located in the district of congresswoman lauren underwood. he will visit mchenry county college, a community college that has a workforce development program and a childcare center, programs that invest in the american families plan. we have talked quite a bit about that. as the president presses for the bipartisan infrastructure plan,
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he's also pressing ahead for the build back better agenda which includes his critical climate priorities and the american families plan. the president's agenda provides a once in a generation investment in the foundations of the middle class' prosperity. from making education more affordable, to providing a comic security through programs like paid leave to families, the president will continue to advance his economic agenda to build back better. congresswoman underwood is a nurse, health policy expert and committed advocate for expanding affordable health care which the build back better agenda accomplishes by permanently lowering health insurance premiums. saving families an average of $50 per person a month. as a result, 9 million people will save hundreds of dollars per year on their premiums and 4 million people uninsured people will gain coverage.
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we will have an update for you as the schedule is being finalized on that. reporter: thanks. the rate of the new vaccinations has been climbing. access has increased with promotions, giveaways. is there a point for the administration where people who have not been vaccinated are choosing not to and the administration will encourage them to get vaccinated. that's their choice. sec. psaki: we had always noted that at a certain phase in the vaccination process or in our fight against covid, we had more supplies than we had demand. which was a month and a half ago. the numbers will go down in terms of the number of people vaccinated each day and each week. more than 2 million people per week are getting their first dose and millions more are
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getting their second dose so our focus now is doubling down on our efforts as we continue to vaccinate millions of people across the summer months. that includes as we have noted, young people under the age of 27 who are being vaccinated at a lower rate than people who are 27 and older. we believe we need to continue to press to get more people on the country vaccinated. even as we are seeing rates in parts of the country that are over 70%. even some places over 80%. there is still more work to be done. it is ultimately up to individuals to decide if they are going to get vaccinated. if you are vaccinated, the vast majority of people are safe from the virus. if you are not vaccinated, you are not. that is also a message we will continue to clearly communicate. these programs will continue. we are going to continue to press forward on approaches that we have seen work in the past. reporter: is it the president's
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view that it's the role of government to protect citizens and private practices from cyber actions like ransomware, and the like? or is it a personal responsibility? [indiscernible] sec. psaki: i would first say the attack over the weekend underscores the need for companies and government agencies as well to focus on improving cybersecurity. we talked about it in the past, about the importance of private sector entities hardening their own cybersecurity. putting in place best practices that have been recommended by the federal government for some time. we are going to continue to be partners. because it's important to protect our critical infrastructure, but also protect -- play what role we can from the federal government to ensure impacts on smaller businesses, on mom-and-pop shops are
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minimized as well. so we have engaged over the last several months under the leadership of a range of officials and a more effective partnership with the private sector, providing resources from the federal government and we will continue that. reporter: meeting with jake sullivan, can you confirm that meeting? the confirmation from the white house that he had no role -- [indiscernible] sec. psaki: i can confirm that meeting. let me see by have more information on it here. one moment. saudi arabia's deputy defense minister is meeting with biden administration officials today, including national security advisor jake sullivan, scheduled to meet with state and defense department officials as well. during the meeting, they will discuss the long-standing partnership between the united states and saudi arabia, regional security, and the u.s. commitment to help saudi arabia
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defend its territory as it faces attacks from iranian-aligned groups. we work to declassify a report that named specific officials who are intelligence community were involved with and knowledgeable of the horrific death of jamal khashoggi. beyond that, i can tell you that of course, this could be a topic, but i'm not going to discuss additional details. go ahead. reporter: i want to follow up on the kaseya attack. have you had any communication at all with russia about this attack? president putin and president biden met and discussed security. were you under the impression that putin would do more to prevent these kind of attacks? sec. psaki: first, let me give you a little bit of an update of the meeting between president biden and president putin. we have undertaken expert level talks that are continuing. we expect to have another meeting next week focused on ransomware attacks.
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i will just reiterate a message that these officials are sending. as the president made clear to president putin when they met. if the russian government cannot and will not take action against, no actors and russia, we will take action or reserve the right to take action on our own. in this case, the intelligence community has not yet attributed the attack. the cybersecurity community agrees people operates out of russia with affiliates around the world. so we will continue to allow the testament to continue, but in our conversations, and we have been in touch directly, we are continuing to convey that message clearly. reporter: you have been in touch directly -- at what level have you been in touch with russia on this specific issue? then, on the ransomware, the fbi has basically told companies not to pay ransomware. are you aware whether in this
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particular case the ransom is $70 million and has been paid? what advice are you giving the company? earlier today, the ceo said critical infrastructure was never affected. do you share that? sec. psaki: let me try to take you through your questions and you can tell me if i missed one. on ransomware -- what was your first question? reporter: where have you been in touch? sec. psaki: a high level of our national security team has been in touch with high-level russian officials. your second question repeat it again now? reporter: [indiscernible] sec. psaki: our ransomware policy continued to be the scene that it's been for several months. we advise against companies paying ransomware, given the -- given that it intensifies as better actors to repeat this behavior. we certainly would -- we saw the
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company put out a statement today about what the impacts were on our systems. we certainly defer to them on the impact. reporter: the company and organizations like the chamber of commerce, national retail federation are having a lobbying campaign to lobby against the tax what they say is increasing taxes does not create jobs. what do you say to that? sec. psaki: first, i would say the american people are aligned with the president's view that corporations and the wealthiest americans can afford to pay a little bit more in order to pay for critical investments in our
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nations infrastructure, but also initiatives and programs that will help to make our country more competitive and bring women into the workforce. i would note in terms of public reports, of the wealthiest companies, many of them did not pay taxes at all. that is not something that is viable, nor does the president think it is fair. it sends a clear message that our tax system is not set up in a fair and equitable way. that is something he feels we should address regardless. that is his view and his proposal. we will have to see how successful these lobbyists are at moving the public opinion and approval rating down from what it is currently, which is the vast majority of the american people agree with the president. go ahead. >> from a response perspective, this is attributed to
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[indiscernible] based in russia. >> it is a good question, phil. i will not be able to deter more specifics from here, but i would note and reiterate that the president's view and had ministrations view is that, even as it is criminal actors taking these actions against the u.s. or entities, private-sector entities in the u.s., even without the engagement of the russian government, they still have a responsibility that continues to be the president's view and he had ministrations via. -- and the administration's view. in terms of what actions he may or may not take, we will allow the national security team to work that through. >> you have a vaccine, the vaccine works, it's available. to a degree it's ever been available before. people are not getting the vaccine and the delta variant is emerging in certain places
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around the country. how do you go through that, what's happening around the country? >> i think as the federal government, we'll have the luxury of feeling frustrated or feeling -- we don't have the luxury of feeling frustrated or feeling upset about individuals getting the vaccine. our responsibility is to ensure we are applying best practices, whether that's working with doctors and pediatricians, addressing access, ensuring people know they can take time off of work and working with their employers to make vaccines accessible. it is up to individuals. but we will continue to press as hard as we can to use best practices to continue to increase the vaccination rates around the country.
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>> [indiscernible] yesterday you guys are directly engaged with various players. can you elaborate a little bit on what that means? sec. psaki: sure, we are closely monitoring the opec plus negotiations and their impact on the global economic recovery from the covid-19 pandemic. as you noted, we are not a party to these talks. but over the weekend and into this week, we've had a number of high-level conversations with officials in saudi arabia, the uae, and other relevant partners. we are encouraged by the ongoing conversation, reaching an agreement, the ongoing talks, i should say, which will promote access to affordable and reliable energy and certainly the impact on prices here -- on prices here are a great interest. go ahead. >> [indiscernible] the president signed these orders back in may. a step of enforcement on private companies. those that work with the federal government. it's been 55 days since he signed the orders.
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the orders from dhs haven't been put in place yet. they're still in the reviewing process. thes attacks are still happening, though. [indiscernible] sec. psaki: i would say the increase in ransomware attack's predated the president taking office. it is something that since day one he's mita priority and has asked his team to focus on where we can have -- since day one he's made it a priority and has asked his team to focus on it. tomorrow, the president will convene with leaders across the agency, including the state department, the primitive justice, dhs, other intelligence community members to discuss ransomware and our overall strategic efforts to counter it. what he asked the team to do several weeks ago was to review and assess what our options are
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and how we can better put in place partnerships with the private sector, best practices, what levels we have from the federal government, including disruption of ransomware. i know that the permit of justice announced a few weeks ago building an international coalition to hold countries who harbor ransom actors accountable, huge factor here as well, because we are not the only country impacted by ransomware. expanding cryptocurrency announcements and reviewing our own ransom policies to build cohesive and consistent approaches to our ransom payments. this is a priority, meeting with administration officials tomorrow, and we will continue to implement this moving forward. >> [indiscernible] sec. psaki: we announced the step just a
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few weeks ago and we are continuing to up our partnership with the private sector, which is a key part of best practices and ensuring we are reducing the impacts -- the vulnerability of private sector entities. but there's more that can be done. it warrants and requires an interagency process and discussion in order to move those policies forward. go ahead. >> a quick follow-up on ransomware. you mentioned there have been extra level talks. is there any evidence they've done anything to curb cyber attacks in russia? sec. psaki: i would say it is disproving a negative, because this is what we are talking about here, ransomware attacks from likely criminal actors. there are these expert level talks and negotiations and engagements, that is an important part of the next step. an important part of what came
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out of their discussion. beyond that, i think what the message is is the president believes even with these committal actors, -- even with these criminal actors, they have a responsibility. that is where the policy is moving forward. it's difficult for me to disprove a negative. >> on covid, you've already mentioned access, the group of people who have access to the vaccine but simply don't want it. as the white house tweaking its strategy to reach those people to change their mind? sec. psaki: i wouldn't say it is about changing their minds, but we've seen over the course of time that the most reliable voices are trusted actors in communities,
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medical experts, doctors, primary care physicians. we will continue to utilize and resource the entities where we feel there has been success and where we have seen through data there's been success in the past. you don't just give up because you have not reached every civil person. we are going to continue to apply what we've seen as best practices over the last several months. >> one more on covid. if the number of cases [indiscernible] are there any circumstances under which the white house would reimpose some of those restrictions, as cases tick up, or is it up to the states? sec. psaki: states and local communities will have to make evaluations about what is in their interest. there are much higher rates and exit a -- of vaccination in some parts of the country versus others. we support their decisions to implement measures that will make their community safe. we are at almost 70% vaccination rate for adults 27 and older but almost for adults 18 and older.
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certainly we don't see we are on track to implementing new additional national measures. >> on ransomware, the statement goes into a lot of detail about the kinds of systems among the clients. they point out they are not related to critical infrastructure. is that simply about informing people about separating this attack from some of the information presented to mr. putin about the no-go infrastructure list that should not be interfered with? do you see that as an important thing? sec. psaki: i would say of course there is unique threat posed by cyber attacks that disrupt critical infrastructure. there's no question about that. if there's a cyberattack that takes out an entire sector, the american economy, that would have an enormous, broad impact. i can't speak to the communication strategy of the company. i know you are not exactly
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asking me to do that. but i will say that regardless of whether a cyberattack impacts critical infrastructure, we take it seriously. we will reserve the option of responding in a manner and mechanism of our choosing regardless. i think there's no question in terms of national security threats, give its critical infrastructure and taking out the meat industry, suppliers who are supplying gasoline, that is something that is a different impact in terms of a national security threat. >> will you guys retaliate? >> is a president briefing and likely to address the issue of those who are questioning whether a booster shot is appropriate with the delta variant? is he also contemplating a position on mask wearing for transportation, like airplanes, trains, so forth? given that there has been some talk that that will be lifted
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with more vaccinations. sec. psaki: would certainly rely on the advice of our health and medical experts -- we certainly rely on the advice of our health and medical experts of any of those were to change in the future. no announcements for today. >> so the israel vaccine is less effective against the delta variant? they are confident people who are vaccinated are safe, but is there a concern mass requirements are being listed too soon -- lifted too soon? sec. psaki: that is per luminary data. the vast majority is data from -- that is preliminary data. the vast majority is data from larger assessments that show it is effective. from larger studies we are relying on. it is per limit area. we will look at what the final conclusions say. >> the pope is in the hospital. anything the white house has to
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say? sec. psaki: i don't have any contact to read out for you. the president wishes him well. and a speedy recovery, of course. go ahead. >> i wanted to go back to covid. there's international concern about the delta variant and others. england placed it under investigation. another said it could indicate less efficacy for the vaccine. what do we know about the other spreading variant in the u.s.? and protections against it? sec. psaki: sure. public health officials continued to track and monitor all the variant -- all of the variants. i will leave it to doctors to discuss this. early data suggests the vaccines continued to work against the variants, including this variant.
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that is why we are focusing on increasing vaccinations across the country. getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself and others from any other covid strain. i believe we will continue to assess data, as more widely available data becomes available. reporter: how is the threat of new variants informing travel restrictions into other countries from other countries? sec. psaki: as you know, working groups with canada, with our european partners, we are continuing to assess what criteria we need to be in place in order to reopen travel. we know in many cases, families are separated. we know that is a heartbreaking challenge, that a lot of people are dealing with. a lot of people are eager to travel to see loved ones. or even for work travel. we understand that. we are eager to do that as well. the u.s. has one of the highest vaccination rates in the world.
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that is something we also assessed, as we look at countries and are making those decisions about reopening travel. these working groups are meant to have an open mind of transparent communication with these countries about what steps need to be taken. reporter: how are these new variants impacting back-to-school plans? are a lot of children still too young to get vaccines? how's this new element factoring into the plans? sec. psaki: the good news is that there are a number of mitigation measures that have been recommended by the cdc that our department of education has been working to help local school districts implement, whether they are social distancing or mask wearing requirements, ventilation. there are many that can from the american rescue plan to help fund this and areas where they didn't have the money available. that is certainly what we expect, and we are looking forward to school staying reopen in the fall. reporter: can you share more about the opec less talks -- opec plus talks? sec. psaki: sure.
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i don't have mortgages about individuals but i can see if there's something more specific to provide for you. reporter: i know you said the u.s. is not party to the talks, but have these officials engaged -- encouraged a specific solution, such as keeping production levels where they are currently through the end of the year? sec. psaki: i would say first, we are engaged directly with updates on the conversations that are happening between the opec members. i can see of course and we are constantly monitoring the price of gas in this country. we know the impacts of oil prices around the world. it is having a direct impact on that. in terms of additional specifics of the conversation, i have nothing more to read out for you. reporter: lastly, the concern level at the white house, is there any chance president biden will personally get involved in contacting the government? sec. psaki: i'm certainly not predicting that at this moment in time. we have high-level officials
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that are engaged with their counterparts. i will see if there's more specifics we can provide a who the individuals are -- we can provide about two the individuals are. reporter: what is the end goal with covid? when does the administration decide they are done? >> our health and medical experts, dr. fauci have made pretty clear we are going to be continuing to battle the virus for some time. when you are vaccinated, you can return to many versions of normal, going to the park, going to restaurants, going to concerts. that is one of the many reasons to get vaccinated, including to protect yourself from the virus. but we are going to take it week by week, month by month, we are continuing to press to get more people vaccinated. we know the rates of young people under the age of 27 are not where they need to be or we want them to be, so we will
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continue to utilize the best practices and work in partnership with health and medical experts and meet people where they are to get the vaccine out to more communities. reporter: a personal question here. over the weekend, the president was out campaig style, -- campaign style, taking selfies, giving hugs. given where covid is in the country, can we go back to totally normal life, like hugging people, shaking hands with strangers, and that is all perfectly ok? even with the rise of other variants? sec. psaki: the cdc and our medical experts have provided clear guidance on this. if you are vaccinated, then certainly you can go out there and engage with society, as the president has. no one loves a good rope line like president biden. so certainly, he welcomes the opportunity to engage directly with many of the people who elected him to serve the country. if you are not vaccinated, then that is certainly a different circumstance.
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we also respect and want to convey, we respect the decision by a range of individuals, whether they are immunocompromised, for they have concerns about health issues in their own family, or themselves to continue to wear a mask whatever they may choose. they have okayed the president being out there and come indicating and shaking hands and handling with the american people. go ahead. reporter: one on oil prices and one covid. you have alluded a couple of times to the impact on gas prices. it is over three dollars a gallon now. huge amount of travel over the holiday weekend. what is the president doing for regular americans to try to keep the gas prices down, whether it be engaging with parties? as a president considering that is the president -- as a president considering other steps to address a painful situation? how much do you guys worry on
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his behalf that it will become a political issue that could be damaging to the president and his party in the coming election? sec. psaki: in 18 months? okay, so, i would say, the president wants americans to have access to affordable and reliable energy at the pump. that is why our team is causally monitoring gas prices in communicating with opec parties to get to a deal and allow for post increases to move forward. i think there sometimes is a misunderstanding of what causes gas prices to increase. to convey to the american people
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that we are working on it, and certainly the supply availability of oil has a huge impact. i would also say that ensuring americans don't bear -- at the pump. one of the core reasons why the president was opposed vehemently to a gas tax, because he thought it would fall on the backs of americans, and that was a bottom redline for him. in terms of additional considerations, i don't have anything more for you. reporter: on covid, you have stayed awake from any question of -- stayed away from any question of mandating the virus. at what point, there is a new op-ed out, saying employers will need to mandate their employees take the vaccine maybe once the fda has fully cleared some of the vaccines -- does this administration envision a point where even if it's not a federal mandate that every american has to take it, do you believe that we are going to have to get to a
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point where schools, employers, colleges, other institutions are going to have to require able to take the vaccine, in order to get to that next stage? to get beyond the plateau we have reached now. sec. psaki: we have always anticipated it. we had seen this happen, that some schools and universities and private schools and others will require and mandate the vaccine. we will leave it up to them to make the decision, as well as employers. we know different companies and private sector entities or even learning is additions are making decisions about how to keep their communities safe. i wouldn't predict a federal mandate. i'm not suggesting or asking. but certainly we are already seeing that take place in communities across the country. reporter: can employers, schools, colleges encourage them to do that? as a real acceleration of the vaccine adoption? sec. psaki: we will make it up to them to make these decisions. go ahead. reporter: a question on jones, who passed up a position at usc.
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she said it's a protest, requiring legal action. what does biden make of the process and the decision? sec. psaki: i have not spoken to the present about the decision on tenure by the institution in north carolina. i will say the students at howard are looking to have her as a professor and their family. but i think there's no question that there continues to be systemic racism in our country. we see that in a range of sectors, including in some learning as additions. -- some learning institutions. the president will address racial equity is -- as a central priority. it is one of the issues he will focus on as president.
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reporter: [indiscernible] promote his vision. the white house is still in negotiations as to what is making it it into the package. sec. psaki: you're talking about the reconciliation package, right? the president is -- obviously there's a lot of work that needs to happen with congress. we expect over the next week for there to be a lot of behind the scenes bill writing and negotiations, discussions on capitol hill come along nights, lots of coffee over the next several days, given that leader schumer has conveyed that he would like to see both the reconciliation package and the infrastructure bill on the floor in july. and we are in july now. in terms of the president's priorities, he has outlined his blueprint in his budget, that includes the american families plan, key components he will talk about when he is on the road tomorrow in illinois. the child tax credit, universal
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pre-k, making community college a reality for americans across the country, it also includes prioritizing and pushing for components of the american jobs plan that did not make it into the infrastructur bipartisan agreement. that is a key component of the climate tax credits, key components that will help address our climate crisis, affordability and accessibility. we will be closely engaged and closely discussion with members who are writing the legislation. -- closely discussing with members who are writing the legislation. reporter: this president ran for office on the issue of race [indiscernible] there's no one effort to strengthen the nation's [indiscernible] of 1866. is he involved in that? what is a conversation about this with senators and
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congressional leaders -- the conversation about this with senators and congressional leaders? sec. psaki: we are appreciative of the efforts of the leaders that are working to update the oldest civil rights law. in terms of a specific conversation with the president, i have nothing to read out for you. reporter: it is important at this moment to strengthen the nation's older's civil rights law -- oldest civil rights laws. there's a call for reparations, there are so many things the congressional black caucus is trying to push forward. these issues need to be more civil rights and humanitarian versus policy. is the president concerned at this time about what will bring more attention to those issues? also in light of taking kkk members marching over in philadelphia over the weekend the fourth of july. sec. psaki: one of the president's key priorities, one of the key pillars of his presidency is
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racial equity and updating and addressing what he feels are systemic issues and how we govern in society. -- and how we govern and society. on voting rights, i expect we will have announcements to make later this week about the president and the vice president's schedule. opportunities they will take to continue to use their platforms and the bully pulpit to advocate for and push for, use every level of government to move those initiatives forward. but certainly, he will remain engaged closely with civil-rights leaders about the range of priorities that you just discussed, as well as leaders in congress. even though things are hard and things look slow at the moment, he doesn't give up. that's not who he is. it will continue to press on -- they will continue to press on moving all these agenda items forward.
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reporter: is there a concern about what the democratic base is feeling as they see voting rights stalled, the issue of reparation not moving as fast as other issues? sec. psaki: i would say, the president shares her frustration about the fact that voting rights -- their frustration about the fact that the voting rights are less assessable across the country, it is a no-brainer. he agrees with the frustration, there's more we can do to put in place reforms on policing, something he feels is long overdue and he would like to sign a bill into law, his role as president is to continue to use his voice, the bully pulpit, and his platforms to advocate for moving these things forward. go ahead. >> you set a couple of times a work continues. will we hear from the president
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today on new dates for the next target date to get to a certain percentage of americans vaccinated? is there any a timeline? sec. psaki: i won't expect a new goal to be set today. what i will tell you is our work will continue person by person, community by community. we will meet people where they are, that's what he is to talk about. he is going to continue to use resources from the federal government, empowering doctors, key voices and communities, and definitely he will hear him talk about that. reporter: definitely not changing my spare would we had a pull out this week and that the washington post that said three in 10 adults say they haven't gotten the coronavirus vaccine and definitely or probably won't. how do you target just them? sec. psaki: if you go back to even five or six months ago, that percentage of people who are not planning to get the vaccine was
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even much higher than that. what we've seen have an impact is, as people get vaccinated in their communities, they tell their neighbors, they tell their friends. primary care physicians tell people coming to other doctors offices to get checkups. pharmacists and communities are calling their neighbors and saying, come on down, we have vaccines for you. we are seeing the impact of that. we are seeing people who had no intention of getting the vaccine for a range of reasons, maybe they didn't know how to get it, they didn't know where to get it, maybe they were scared of the impacts, actually get vaccinated. that to us is an encouraging sign that we can continue to press and make progress moving forward. reporter: two questions. first, is there a target for herd immunity? 75%, 80%? what is double for the administration right now? sec. psaki: dr. fauci has
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conveyed herd immunity is an outdated term. we had set a goal of reaching 70% of adults vaccinated by july 4. we are continuing to press to reach it and we will in the next couple of weeks, for adults over the age of 18. but our work does not stop there and we will continue to press to get 12-18-year-old vaccinated. we will continue to work with communities where there is lower vaccination rates. that's one of the reasons we initiated these strike forces, to go into communities and work with them to determine what they need, to take a localized, specific approach that works with elected officials and communities. i don't have a new goal to set for you. i would remind all of you that we have reduced the death rate by 90%. we will continue to press ahead past july 4. >> [indiscernible] why did they do that? is that a sign of a lack of
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trust? sec. psaki: i would point into the department of defense on that, on the specific accuracy of those comments. >> how do you explain that to them? sec. psaki: again, i will point you to the department of defense. they are the leaders on the ground who would have handed off the afghan leaders on the ground. go ahead. reporter: there's been a lot of talk understandably about what the admin astray should is doing, are they doing enough, about as -- about afghan translators. is the administration concerned about an exit is -- an exodus? a lot of afghans who will want to come here or make their way to europe. would the u.s. the opening the doors to some of these people? are you preparing for an exodus? sec. psaki: our focus as of now
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is identifying the group of applicants who have serviced interpreters and translators, as well as other at-risk categories who have assisted a spare would for everybody else -- who have assisted us. for everybody else, they will be relocated to a location of head of afghanistan before we complete the military drawdown. that is where our focus is on at this point in time. of course, we are doing that. in part because we know these are individuals who helped the u.s., even often at great personal risk to themselves and their families, so we will work every possible way to make sure that we can help those who have helped us. but that is really what our focus is at this point. reporter: what about the broader concern of an influx of people
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trying to reach europe? sec. psaki: i don't have any update on that. i'm happy to talk to our national security team and see if there is an assessment or concern there. go ahead. reporter: axios reported double-digit wage growth in key sectors like transportation and hospitality. but you will talk to any person in those sectors and they will tell you they are having difficulty finding workers for those jobs. is the white house offering any advice to these players at this point? with the increased wage to $15 an hour, they are still having trouble. sec. psaki: certainly, we are seeing people feel more comfortable
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rejoining the job market. a big factor in our view is a vaccination rates in communities across the country. we know employers are starting to hire, as we've seen from the job numbers, 850,000 jobs last month was a very large number. i will just note since you give me the opportunity, in terms of specific industries, there are cases where they need to pay their workers more. we can follow-up after if there's a specific sector and i am happy to ask the economic team about that. reporter: the white house covid response set up response teams to go into communities with low vaccination rates. what communities are you in touch with? sec. psaki: we are in touch with a range of communities. i provided an update last week that we were in touch with missouri about possibly sending some teams there. we had already sent a team to colorado to collaborate with a local to permit of health. i can see if there is more. -- a local department of health. i can see of there is more. we are happy to have these teams at helping communities get vaccinated and protecting themselves from the virus.
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reporter: [indiscernible] if a community is particularly bad, you approach that community and asked, do you want to be helped? sec. psaki: the cdc is deploying these teams. we can see vaccination rates and where there are rising caseloads and work on a collaborative way with the communities to deploy the team. reporter: [indiscernible] nomination for the doj. just curious about that position. sec. psaki: i would say there's certainly a position -- there is a certainly a position the president is eager to fill. i don't have anything for you in terms of the timeline for it. reporter: will the president continued to provide you
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military and assistance in afghanistan? but if the ballot -- but if the taliban were to take over, would it be withdrawn? sec. psaki: we plan to have a continued presence in kabul, but we will also continue to be partners to the afghan government. that is something the president reiterated when he met with leaders a week and a half ago, that includes security systems, humanitarian assistance, and that includes over the horizon capacity to ensure that we are working to address any threats that we face. that will continue and we intend to have a presence on the ground in our embassy in kabul. reporter: it seems like patella taliban is getting more power and taking over there. [indiscernible] sec. psaki: i would take us back to when
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the president made this decision and announcements. he asked his team to do a clear assessment, not to sugarcoat it come of what the impact would be, withdrawing our troops from afghanistan. after a 20 year war, what the president is continuing to press on is a political solution. and political negotiations and discussions we hope will reconvene soon to move toward a political solution on the ground, to bring greater peace and stability to the people of afghanistan. that is his hope. reporter: you mentioned two weeks ago that vaccine sharing to the rest of the world is not a matter of supply, but overcoming those difficult challenges. now that you have past the deadline of june and you have not met a target of distributing 80 million vaccine doses, what has the administration learned and will do differently? do you have a target for completing those 80 million doses? a follow-up on that, for a country that has refrigeration and distribution challenges, what is the administration focusing on pfizer and moderna
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rather than johnson & johnson? then another question. sec. psaki: first let me say that we have allocated all 80 million doses. i would say what we have learned through the process is that there are logistical challenges. because when you talk about working with countries even if it is a nato country, sometimes we have to work through legal barriers, we have to work through regulatory barriers, there are issues regarding materials needed to distribute the vaccines and also transportation issues with refrigeration needed as well. we have noted even as we have allocated all these doses come as we committed to, that part of it is, countries need to be ready to receive them on the ground. there are certainly lessons we have learned. as we have proceeded, we have become -- these countries have become more effective and efficient at receiving the doses, they have worked through
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the red tape, enabling us to provide the doses more easily in the future. in terms of the allocation of doses, we provide what is available. i don't have any more detail for you in terms of which vaccines. we had a large percentage of magenta and pfizer vaccine, hence perhaps they are going to more countries. reporter: there is violence -- was violence in georgia yesterday, an lgbtq activist and journalist were attacked. will there be any kind of real repercussion situations like in georgia or around the country? sec. psaki: absolutely. that is a priority of the president and the secretary of state. they will have more of a policy announcement, i don't have one to preview for you. go ahead. reporter: [indiscernible]
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does the president believe that his strategy to counter the iran leadership in syria is working? with the second attack we had seen in the last week? sec. psaki: he approved the strikes, one, with full legal authority, full u.s. legal authority and international authority. because in a way, that was proportionate and responded to the threats against our u.s. men and women serving and entities serving in his country -- in this country. we do not expect everything to arrive at a complete halt at the time, but he felt it was the appropriate, proportionate step. >> on cyber, the president and president putin had a meeting
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about ransomware. sec. psaki: i said the meetings are ongoing and there is another went next week. >> has there been one, a meeting between the 2 -- sec. psaki: i do not have an agenda for you. i'd have anything more than cyber and expert level meetings. we are not going to read out the agenda. >> is the president frustrated -- sec. psaki: the meeting with the russian president was just a couple of weeks ago and we have had ongoing meetings pretty much since that point, and again there is another meeting scheduled for next week. >> there was a discussion of eight summit meeting and the idea was to give some leaders -- get some leaders together. is the president interested in something like that? would he be willing to take part in a discussion like that, to discuss the rules of the road
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and about the current tensions in the west and the east? sec. psaki: i don't have anything to preview for you quite yet. there are a range of engagements we have the number of the p5 countries which will certainly continue, but in terms of a meeting like that, i don't have anything to preview for you. i don't think we are quite at that point in the planning process quite yet. >> let me follow-up. as you know, this visit for illinois -- [indiscernible]
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could you explain more how this trip can advance the biden political agenda, and then on another very serious note, [indiscernible] i understand the administration did a lot many things to do to help combat crime, but is there something more that perhaps the president may be able to discuss?
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sec. psaki: on the first question, i think the president was visiting a college located in crystal lake, illinois, and he ran as someone who would represent not just democrats or republicans or just independents but all people. this is more of an opportunity to speak to all americans about why his filled back better agenda and why his effort to make -- extent the child tax credit and make college more affordable is something that many people should be able to support. that is the kc will make tomorrow. last week he did the bipartisan
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infrastructure deal and did a detail lay down and tomorrow he will do one of the rest of the agenda and what many of you would shorthand as the conciliation, many components of that package. he is also eager to see congressman underwood. she has been such an advocate. >> that is exactly the county that that democrats are trying to get rid up for her [indiscernible] that may be moot soon because that may not be her -- could you clarify, i did not think she had a speaking role in the program tomorrow. sec. psaki: i will have to check. i wanted to give you an overview of why he was going there, but in terms of specific meetings, i think we are still finalizing the details.
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>> [indiscernible] sec. psaki: i know there is a great at the airport. i will have to check and see how long that is allocated for the meeting he is always receptive to what any elected official wants to discuss. i will note the president continues to work to address violent crime and we have seen rates go up over the last 18 months around the country, including in the city of chicago. as you know, we see spikes any violent crime typically during the summer, and often during the holiday weekends, and we saw that over the last weekend. i will say that he will continue to advocate for an the mayor want to discuss this, but increases in his budget including an additional $300 million more for a program -- more than what i would say was approved in the prior administration budget. the president wants the funding
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to go out to communities across the country. we will continue to work to empower atf, an increase of the last trump budget to ensure they have the funding they need to crackdown on illegal guns. i know gun violence is a driver of the crimes in chicago. he is going to continue to advocate for supporting evidence-based community violence and programs that are proven to reduce gun violence. i'm sure he will be happy to discuss the components of his budget. thank you so much. have a great day. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] [captions copyright national
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cable satellite corp. 2021] >> president biden comments on the covid-19 pandemic. he says for the remainder of the summer months, his administration's vaccination efforts will continue with community engagement. this includes placing more mobile vaccine units into hard-to-reach areas. this is just over 10 minutes. this is just over 10 minutes. pres. biden:


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