Biden says he will join former presidents and publicly get coronavirus vaccine

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President-elect Joe Biden on Thursday said that he would join three former presidents in getting a coronavirus vaccine publicly to prove that it’s safe.

During an interview on CNN, Jake Tapper asked Biden if he would get vaccinated before the inauguration, and if he would do so in public like former Presidents Obama, George W. Bush and Clinton have said they would do.

“I’d be happy to do that,” Biden said. He went on to refer to the nation’s top infectious disease expert, saying, “When Dr. [Anthony] Fauci says we have a vaccine that is safe, that’s the moment in which I will stand before the public and say that.”

The three former presidents have signaled they would take a vaccine publicly once public health officials determine that it’s safe. Bush’s chief of staff Freddy Ford told CNN that he would “gladly do so on camera.” President Obama said that he’d be willing to take the vaccine on live television.

The pledges come as polls have shown some skepticism about the vaccine, which Biden acknowledged during the interview.

“People have lost faith in the vaccine’s ability to work. Already the numbers are staggeringly low, and it matters what a president and vice president do,” Biden said. “I think that my three predecessors have set the model as to what should be done, saying ‘once it’s declared to be safe … then obviously, we take it.’”

The first vaccines for the virus are expected to receive emergency use authorization in the U.S. this month. Officials have said the first doses will go to front-line health care workers and at-risk populations.

Tags Anthony Fauci Barack Obama Biden transition Bill Clinton CNN interview Coronavirus COVID-19 George W. Bush Jake Tapper Joe Biden Vaccine

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