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Republican Arkansas governor: Give control of vaccine distribution to states

Arkansas Gov. Asa HutchinsonAsa HutchinsonThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Tax March - Congress returns; infrastructure takes center stage Arkansas governor says 'divisive' Trump attacks on GOP officials are 'unhelpful' Sunday shows - Infrastructure dominates MORE (R) called on President BidenJoe BidenIRS to roll out payments for ,000 child tax credit in July Capitol Police told not to use most aggressive tactics in riot response, report finds Biden to accompany first lady to appointment for 'common medical procedure' MORE to give greater control of vaccine distribution efforts to states on Sunday, echoing suggestions he made with other governors in a letter to the White House urging greater communication between state and federal officials.

Speaking on CNN's "State of the Union," Hutchinson said that the Biden administration's handling of the federal vaccination efforts had been "seamless" so far. He added, however, that administration officials on could do more to coordinate with state counterparts who in some cases are shipping vaccines to the same pharmacies and health care facilities to which federal vaccine allotments are being sent.

"Give it to the states, we'll get it out...it's easier to coordinate that way," Hutchinson said Sunday.

"We're going to continue to increase getting those doses out," he added of state efforts to ramp up vaccine distribution.

During the interview, Hutchinson was also asked about a recent decision by his nephew, an Arkansas state senator, to leave the Republican Party in response to the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. Hutchinson responded that he respected his nephew's decision and agreed that former President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden to move ahead with billion UAE weapons sale approved by Trump Fox News hires high-profile defense team in Dominion defamation lawsuit Associate indicted in Gaetz scandal cooperating with DOJ: report MORE should not be the standard-bearer of the GOP.

"No I wouldn't," Hutchinson said when asked by CNN's Dana BashDana BashArkansas governor says 'divisive' Trump attacks on GOP officials are 'unhelpful' Biden's first presser wasn't about him — not really Blinken suggests US won't take punitive action on China over COVID-19 MORE if he would support Trump's nomination in 2024. 

"We have to have many different voices [in the party], and in my view we can't let him define us for the future," the governor said. "It would just further divide our country and it would hurt our Republican Party."

Hutchinson has been one of a handful of GOP elected officials to publicly break from the former president in the weeks following the Capitol riot; many Republican members of Congress have avoided issuing pointed criticism of the president in the wake of the violence.