When I think of world leaders, the idea that they would have to get permission from their staff to speak seems absurd. The most powerful person in their individual nations would of course never answer to administrative hirelings.
On Tuesday, President Biden announced new steps his administration is taking to combat the Omicron variant. He said in his prepared speech, the federal government will be sending out free Covid tests to anyone who requests one.
“The federal government will purchase one half billion…additional at-home rapid tests with delivery starting in January. We’ll be getting these tests to Americans for free,”
This announcement comes just two weeks after White House press secretary Jen Psaki scoffed at the idea of sending free tests to Americans who want them.
“Should we just send one to every American?” Psaki asked a reporter sarcastically. “Then what, then what happens if you, if every American has one test?” she continued in an exasperated tone. “How much does that cost, and then what happens after that?”
Jen Psaki somewhat mockingly asks reporter at the White House Daily Press Briefing if the US should be sending out rapid #COVID19 tests to every household.
— Matt Karolian (@mkarolian) December 6, 2021
After Biden completed his finished remarks, and according to Joe who apparently was supposed to make a beeline for the exit when finished, snapped at the reporters as they peppered him with questions before he was able to get away.
“I’m not even supposed to be having this press conference right now,” Biden said admitting his staff doesn’t want him taking questions from reporters.
BIDEN: "I'm not supposed to be having this press conference right now." pic.twitter.com/JBsnMEPSPb
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) December 21, 2021
During the speech, Biden again warned that unvaccinated Americans faced a greater risk of death from the virus.
“If you are unvaccinated you are at a higher risk of getting severely ill from COVID-19, getting hospitalized, and even dying,” he said.
"If you're not fully vaccinated, you have good reason to be concerned" about omicron, Pres. Biden says.
— ABC News (@ABC) December 21, 2021
The president also defended his vaccine mandates for private businesses with over 100 employees, even though they are being challenged in the courts.
“I know vaccination requirements aren’t popular… but my administration didn’t put them in place to control your life, they put them in place to save your life. And the lives of others,” he said.