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White House Says The U.S. Will Narrowly Miss Its Vaccination Goal

A student looks back at his mother, as he is vaccinated at a school-based COVID-19 vaccination clinic for students 12 and older in San Pedro, Calif., last month.
Damian Dovarganes
/
AP
A student looks back at his mother, as he is vaccinated at a school-based COVID-19 vaccination clinic for students 12 and older in San Pedro, Calif., last month.

The country will narrowly miss President Biden's goal of having 70% of the U.S. adult population at least partially vaccinated by July 4, according to a White House official who did not want to get ahead of the public announcement.

But the official also noted that 70% of those 30 and older have already been vaccinated a week and a half ahead of Independence Day and that those 27 and older are expected to also reach the 70% mark by July 4.

Currently, 65% of the adult population has gotten at least one shot and 56% are fully vaccinated, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. At current rates, the U.S. is on track to get to about 67% people with at least one shot by July 4.

The coronavirus has been shown to affect older people worse, on average and 87% of those 65 and older have had at least one dose, while 77% are fully vaccinated.

Demand for vaccinations has slowed dramatically, leaving scientists to be concerned about the rise of the Delta variant and the potential for another moderate surge in pockets of the country with low vaccination rates.

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The president had also told Americans they could expect to have small backyard gatherings by the Fourth of July holiday. However, large gatherings are becoming common with the lower levels of virus and the level of vaccinations that have been achieved.

The White House is planning a gathering of more than 1,000 military and front-line workers on the White House lawn on the Fourth of July.

Vaccination and mask wearing have become polarizing topics. Surveys have found that Trump supporters are among the least likely to want to get vaccinated — and there is a sharp blue-red divide by states won by either Biden or Trump.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Tamara Keith has been a White House correspondent for NPR since 2014 and co-hosts the NPR Politics Podcast, the top political news podcast in America. Keith has chronicled the Trump administration from day one, putting this unorthodox presidency in context for NPR listeners, from early morning tweets to executive orders and investigations. She covered the final two years of the Obama presidency, and during the 2016 presidential campaign she was assigned to cover Hillary Clinton. In 2018, Keith was elected to serve on the board of the White House Correspondents' Association.
Domenico Montanaro is NPR's senior political editor/correspondent. Based in Washington, D.C., his work appears on air and online delivering analysis of the political climate in Washington and campaigns. He also helps edit political coverage.
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