“Well, there is a question of whether it’s ever appropriate to engage in an exercise in gaudy, celebrity-drenched self-adulation, but that’s a separate question.”
— David Axelrod, quoted by the New York Times, on whether it’s safe for President Biden to attend the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner, given the Covid risks.
Based on European case increases, former Biden adviser Andy Slavitt warned of a spring wave of Covid infections in the United States: “An estimated 45% of the US has had omicron recently. That should be highly protective. Those fully vaccinated but who haven’t had omicron should be vulnerable to infection from BA2, but largely won’t be hospitalized or worse. Those without prior infection would be at most risk of infection. Those who haven’t been infected but also aren’t vaccinated or boosted will be at highest risk of hospitalization. So we could see lots of cases, but an even lower portion of ppl hospitalized than last wave.”
“The Biden administration is telling Congress that it needs an additional $30 billion to press ahead with the fight against Covid-19,” the AP reports.Politico: “While the administration anticipates it has enough vaccines and therapeutics to ride out the Omicron surge, three people with knowledge of the matter said the government doesn’t currently have enough money to respond if another dangerous variant emerges.”
A new Monmouth poll finds 70% of Americans agree with the sentiment that “it’s time we accept that Covid is here to stay and we just need to get on with our lives” – including 78% of those who report having gotten Covid and 65% of those who say they have not been infected. The main difference in the sense that it is time to move on is due to partisanship – ranging from 89% of Republicans and 71% of independents to 47% of Democrats.
Daily Beast: “QAnon acolytes in Dallas are now drinking toxic chemicals from a communal punch bowl, according to the family of a woman who joined the Texas ‘cult’ that’s waiting for the supposed resurrection of President John F. Kennedy and his late son, JFK Jr.
“Numerous members of the Leek family told the Dallas Observer that the woman, who reportedly abandoned her husband and children in Delaware last month to follow Trump-supporting QAnon leader Michael Brian Protzman to Dallas, has been quaffing a mixture containing chlorine dioxide—industrial bleach—which she apparently distributes among the group…
“Bleach-drinking enthusiasts got a boost last year when then-President Trump held a televised news conference during which he marveled at the possibility of using disinfectants to treat or prevent COVID-19.”