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There is little question that the coronavirus outbreak was politicized by the left, who regularly wield the pandemic like a hammer to beat President Trump over the head.
Democrats are engaged in a concerted effort to keep Americans fearful, believing this will help them drag 77-year-old nominee Joe Biden across the finish line, and they’re not eager to see the release of a vaccine before election day.
On Tuesday, the Food and Drug Administration unveiled new vaccine guidelines that toughen the requirements for a COVID-19 vaccine emergency authorization, meaning there’s little chance of one being ready before next month’s election.
Tagging FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn in a tweet, Trump called the development “just another political hit job!”
New FDA Rules make it more difficult for them to speed up vaccines for approval before Election Day. Just another political hit job! @SteveFDA
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 7, 2020
Trump was asked a White House briefing last month about the FDA’s plans for new, tougher standards for the emergency authorization of a coronavirus vaccine.
“That has to be approved by the White House. We may or may not approve it. That sounds like a political move,” the president said.
CNN was quick to roll out Tom Frieden, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who co-authored an op-ed over the summer that accused the Trump administration of undermining the agency’s ability to effectively respond to the pandemic.
Frieden said he was “encouraged” by reports that the White House backed off on an attempt to block the new guideline.
The New York Times reported earlier Tuesday the White House was “blocking strict new federal guidelines for the emergency release of a coronavirus vaccine, objecting to a provision that would almost certainly guarantee that no vaccine could be authorized before the election on Nov. 3.”
The former director pushed the familiar talking points on safety — which is to suggest that Trump is so committed to being reelected that he would push a vaccine that could kill people.
“What it means is there aren’t going to be shortcuts on safety,” Frieden said. “And the risk here is that one of the companies might have said, ‘Hey, it works, let’s give it to people, let’s make a big announcement.’ But that would have been done before the people who had gotten the vaccine had had time to have adverse reactions or even before we had known that the protection, if it protects, lasts a long time.”
“So this is a step forward, this is a step that should help with confidence for a vaccine, if, as I say, it holds,” he added.
So long as the vaccine comes after the election.
The new FDA guidelines reportedly say safety data on a coronavirus vaccine will need to be monitored for at least two months after Phase 3 clinical trials have been completed.
Dr. Hahn said in a statement that he hoped the guidelines would help “the public understand our science-based decision-making process that assures vaccine quality, safety and efficacy.”
While the president has never guaranteed that a vaccine would be ready before the election, he has repeatedly said that one may be ready very soon.
Democrats were quick to jump on the hopeful predictions, as seen when Sen. Kamala Harris, the vice presidential running mate of party nominee Joe Biden, questioned the safety of any vaccine emerging during the Trump administration.
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