Arkansas Gov. Asa HutchinsonAsa HutchinsonSunday shows – Spotlight shifts to deadly storms Hutchinson: ‘Hundreds and hundreds of homes’ were destroyed in storm Sunday shows preview: Officials, experts respond to omicron; Biden administration raises alarms about Russia, China MORE (R) on Monday thanked President BidenJoe BidenThe 10 races that will decide the Senate majority Bidens: Desmond Tutu’s legacy will ‘echo throughout the ages’ Media love bad news; you don’t have to MORE for his efforts to “depoliticize” the nation’s response to the coronavirus pandemic as the omicron variant surges across the country.
Biden held a call with numerous governors to discuss the response to the latest COVID-19 variant, which is highly contagious and has led to a sharp increase in cases and triggered long waits for testing.
“I want to thank all of the White House team for being such great support to the governors,” Hutchinson said in opening remarks on the conference call. “And I want to thank, Mr. President, [for] your address to the nation last week. Thank you for your comments designed to depoliticize our COVID response. I think that was helpful.
“As we face omicron, the governors and your administration must be working together more closely than ever. I particularly appreciate your comments on increasing the supply chain on rapid COVID tests. This has become a real challenge for the governors,” added Hutchinson, who is the chairman of the National Governors Association.
Biden in remarks last week on the pandemic publicly thanked former President Trump for saying he’d gotten his booster shot against COVID-19, calling it “one of the few things he and I agree on.”
The president went on to call for a unified response to the pandemic, urging Americans to honor their “patriotic duty” and get vaccinated.
Other White House officials later amplified Trump’s comments on COVID-19 vaccines, which he said have largely prevented death from the coronavirus for those who got the shot.
The pandemic response in the United States has been riven by politics dating back to the early months of the outbreak, when Trump and other Republicans downplayed the need to wear masks in public spaces. Many GOP lawmakers, particularly in the House, continue to defy masking requirements and have condemned the push for more vaccinations to prevent further spread of the virus.