The White House blamed former President Donald Trump’s administration on Monday for the 100,000 coronavirus deaths after President Joe Biden took office.
Psaki blamed the Trump administration for failing to order more vaccines from manufacturers and failing to federally organize vaccinators to distribute the shots.
“You can always look back and say, ‘We wish we would have done this better, we wish the storm wouldn’t have come,’” Psaki said. “But our focus is on building out of the hole that we inherited.” Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and other members of the administration have repeatedly and falsely claimed that Trump did not have a plan to distribute the vaccines.
“My predecessor, as my mother would say, God love him, failed to order enough vaccines, failed to mobilize the effort to administer the shots, failed to set up vaccine centers. That changed the moment we took office,” Biden claimed falsely during a speech on Friday at a Pfizer manufacturing plant.
But Trump worked with states to distribute the vaccines across the country after working with his Operation Warp Speed team to develop the vaccines in record time.
Trump’s Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) outlined the distribution plan for the vaccines in September 2020.
In December, HHS also announced the purchase of an additional 100 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine, after already purchasing 100 million doses with the option of an additional 400 million. The Trump administration also announced the purchase of 200 million doses of the Moderna vaccine in December with the option to acquire an additional 300 million doses.
Biden plans to publicly acknowledge the 500,000 deaths from the virus at a speech on Monday night and hold a memorial ceremony.