Vice President Mike Pence Friday rejected Democrat nominee Joe Biden's contention during his acceptance speech Thursday that "no miracle is coming" to save the United States from the coronavirus pandemic, insisting instead that the administration believes there is a "miracle around the corner" because of continued movement toward a vaccine.
"We believe it's very likely that we'll have one or more vaccines for the coronavirus before the end of this year," Pence, who leads the White House's Coronavirus Task Force, said on CNN's "New Day." "All of that is a tribute to President [Donald] Trump's leadership. While we grieve with those who lost loved ones, had we not stood up the response as Joe Biden wanted us to do, we would have lost hundreds of thousands of more Americans."
Show co-host John Berman noted that as of this morning, some 174,000 Americans have died because of the pandemic, but Pence would not give a projection for the rest of the year.
"When President Trump suspended all travel from China before the end of January ... an action that Joe Biden criticized as xenophobic [and] said it was racist for the president to suspend travel from China, the reality is that bought us time to begin work on a vaccine."
Several companies are in phase 3 clinical trials for a vaccine, but "we're not waiting for that," said Pence. "We're actually manufacturing millions of doses of a vaccine so the moment the FDA [Food and Drug Administration] says it's safe and effective, we'll be able to distribute it to the American people."
Berman pointed out that on June 16, Pence wrote that the battle was being won over coronavirus, and that the panic was "overblown," but since then, more than 53,000 Americans have died and 3 million more have been infected.
"We're doing 800,000 tests a day," said Pence. "I learned yesterday at the task force meeting we have more than 115,000 ventilators in the national stockpile today. We have had medicines that have been developed like remdesivir. We hope soon that there will be an approval of what's called convalescent plasma."
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