Mississippi governor: Biden goal of 70 percent of US vaccinated by July 4 is ‘arbitrary’

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves (R) said on Sunday that President Biden’s goal of having 70 percent of Americans at least partially vaccinated by July 4 is “arbitrary, to say the least.” 

CNN’s Jake Tapper asked Reeves on “State of the Union” whether the governor was concerned about the fact that only 30 percent of Mississippi residents are fully vaccinated. Fewer than 50 percent of adults in the state have had at least one dose of a vaccine.

“The fact is, for over a year, we tried to focus our goals on reducing hospitalizations, reducing the number of individuals in ICU beds, because we think the most important thing is that if you get the virus, it’s if you can get better with good, quality care, that you receive that quality care,” Reeves said.

Reeves pointed to a sharp drop in new cases and hospitalizations, adding, “For that entire year period, the goal post was, let’s reduce the number of cases. And we have been successful at doing that.”

Tapper then asked the Republican governor if he’s worried that residents of his state are “sitting ducks,” pointing to public health experts who say states with low vaccination rates could see a resurgence of the virus.

“Well, those same public health experts are the exact same individuals that have been advising President Biden, who said in March that we were all Neanderthals because we were willing to open our state up and open our economy up. They were wrong then and they’re wrong now,” Reeves told Tapper. 

“Now, am I worried? You have heard me say this throughout this pandemic. If the question is, are you concerned with respect to the pandemic, the answer is always yes, no matter what the remaining words in the sentence is or the remaining words in the question. And that’s just a fact. We’re going to continue to monitor it very closely,” Reeves added.

Tags CNN Jake Tapper Joe Biden Mississippi Tate Reeves vaccinations
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