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Why Did Trump Decide Not to Have a Plan to Vaccinate the Country?

A healthcare worker prepares a dose of the BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at a vaccination hub location in League City, Texas, February 5, 2021. (Photo by Mark Felix / AFP) (Photo by MARK FELIX/AFP /AFP via Getty Images)
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March 13, 2021 11:14 a.m.

As we noted in various articles over the last two days the Trump administration (albeit mainly career civil servants) deserve some credit for Operation Warp Speed, which backstopped the risk in private pharmaceutical companies of going all out in vaccine creation and production. But on the distribution front, their record was close to catastrophic. As Josh Kovensky and Kate Riga explain here, they literally had no plan to do anything. The “plan” was not to have a plan. The military would airlift the supplies to designated airports in each state and then it was up to the states.

So why did the administration at least do the basic blocking and tackling of federal support for vaccine development and drop the ball entirely on a plan to get the country vaccinated?

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