Vermont governor lifts restrictions as state becomes first to reach 80 percent vaccinated

Vermont governor lifts restrictions as state becomes first to reach 80 percent vaccinated
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Gov. Phil Scott (R) announced Monday that Vermont has become the first state in the country to vaccinate 80 percent of its eligible population of people 12 and older against the coronavirus, and that as a result of the successful vaccination campaign, all remaining pandemic restrictions would be lifted. 

“Effective immediately, I'm lifting all remaining COVID restrictions. Our work continues, but Vermonters can be proud of what they've done," Scott tweeted.

The White House touted Vermont’s progress as it pushes to have the country as a whole reach 70 percent of adults with at least one dose by July 4th, a goal that is in doubt given lagging vaccination rates nationally. 

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“Yes, Vermont is a small state -- but even so, the fact that they have gone more than a week without a single COVID death, and have only 2 people hospitalized due to COVID in the state -- is a sign of how an aggressive vaccination effort can make a HUGE difference!” tweeted White House chief of staff Ron KlainRon KlainThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Jan. 6 probe, infrastructure to dominate week White House looks to cool battle with Facebook Texas Democrats are fighting harder than Biden or congressional Democrats MORE

Nationally, 62 percent of people 12 and older have received at least one vaccine dose, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

When looking at adults 18 and over, the national figure is 64.4 percent, meaning there is progress to be made if the country will hit the Biden administration's July 4 goal of 70 percent. 

There are major disparities among the states, though, which generally mirror the red vs. blue political divide. 

Vermont, Hawaii and Massachusetts are at the top of the list with more than 80 percent of adults 18 and older vaccinated, according to data compiled by The New York Times

Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana are at the bottom, with less than 50 percent.