Biden fact check: White House claimed the U.S. vaccinated record 2.9m on Saturday (it was 1.56m) and exaggerated share of older Americans who've been fully immunized

 For an administration that prides itself on talking straight about the pandemic, the self-congratulation Wednesday went too far.

President Joe Biden wrongly claimed the U.S. vaccinated a record 2.9 million people on Saturday while his special adviser on the pandemic exaggerated the share of older Americans who've been fully immunized.

Biden crowed about the numbers on Thursday in a speech at the White House. 

'On Saturday, we hit a record of 2.9 million vaccinations in one day in America, he said. 'And beyond the numbers are the stories: a father who says he no longer fears for his daughter when she leaves to go to work at the hospital; the children who are now able to hug their grandparents. The vaccines bring hope and healing in so many ways.'

His senior advisor to the coronavirus task force Andy Slavitt also touted the figure. 'On Saturday, we set an all-time, single-day record: nearly 3 million Americans vaccinated -- a pace seen nowhere else in the world,' he said at the top of a White House task force briefing.

But the claim is off base.

President Joe Biden speaks at an event at the White House Thursday. He said the nation hit a record Saturday with 2.9 million doses ¿ but that included multiple days' worth of shots

President Joe Biden speaks at an event at the White House Thursday. He said the nation hit a record Saturday with 2.9 million doses – but that included multiple days' worth of shots

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The government's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 2.9 million doses were recorded Saturday. But that total comes from multiple days of vaccinations. Only 1.56 million doses were administered Saturday, as currently reported by the CDC.

That's far from a one-day record. The most productive day for vaccinations was Feb. 26, when 2.8 million doses were administered.

The 1.56 million figure is more in keeping with the daily average – which has been boosted since hovering around 1 million a day when Biden first took office. 

Vaccinations have greatly increased overall in recent weeks. The figure was based on the number of shots 'reported administered.' Various government covid statistics include a time lag. 

There are also issues with claims Slavitt made about vaccinating the elderly. 

In this Jan. 27, 2021, image from video, Andy Slavitt, senior adviser to the White House COVID-19 Response Team, speaks during a White House briefing on the Biden administration's response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Washington

In this Jan. 27, 2021, image from video, Andy Slavitt, senior adviser to the White House COVID-19 Response Team, speaks during a White House briefing on the Biden administration's response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Washington


'In terms of protecting the most vulnerable - our core duty as a nation - when we came into office, 8 per cent of people over 65 were vaccinated. Today, 60 per cent are vaccinated. And according to the CDC´s new guidance, vaccinated parents can now visit and hug their grandchildren - and, in most circumstances, without wearing a mask,' he said.

But his numbers are wrong. He is counting people who have received only their first dose as immune and able to mingle. Public health officials stress that only fully vaccinated people can safely be around each other and low-risk people without the distancing and masking recommended for the population at large.


The CDC says 61% of people over 64 have received at least one dose – but only 31% are fully vaccinated.

The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines each require two doses, spread several weeks apart. The newer Johnson & Johnson vaccine requires only one dose. In all cases, it takes two weeks to build immunity after being fully vaccinated.

Slavitt's comment comes as top health officials are urging states not to reopen too quickly amid a leveling off of infections and deaths. The governor of Texas is lifting a statewide mask mandate, while the governor of Maryland is also lifting restrictions. 

Biden fact check: White House claimed the U.S. vaccinated record 2.9m on Saturday (it was 1.56m) and exaggerated share of older Americans who've been fully immunized Biden fact check: White House claimed the U.S. vaccinated record 2.9m on Saturday (it was 1.56m) and exaggerated share of older Americans who've been fully immunized Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 03:59 Rating: 5

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