Trump Absent As His Administration Muddles Its Vaccine Message

Trump has been notably absent as officials work to build public trust in the coronavirus vaccine. There is a lot of work to do after Trump consistently downplayed the virus and politicized the vaccine, and now his administration’s muddled and contradictory messaging has only made it more difficult. Instead of doing more to help, Trump is still focused on spreading lies and sulking over his election defeat.

Trump has been notably absent from efforts to build public trust around getting the coronavirus vaccine.

New York Times: “Notably absent from any planned public proceedings is President Trump, who has said relatively little about the vaccine that may be seen as a singular achievement and has made it clear that he is not scheduled to take it himself.”

The Trump administration was slow to begin its efforts to instill public trust in the vaccine and instead treated it as a political victory.

CNN: “Asked by a reporter last week if there was a plan to publicize the milestone in the US, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said, ‘You make me feel as if we should.’ The bewilderment highlighted the federal government’s lagging effort to instill public trust in the vaccine, which has often been treated as a political prize — and has been greeted with unusually high skepticism from the American public.”

The Trump administration continues to deliver muddled and often contradictory messages, which only further undermines public trust. 

New York Times: “The vaccine may provide a ray of hope at a time when the surging coronavirus is regularly killing around 3,000 Americans a day. But the message on the virus from the Trump administration’s highest officials remains muddled and often contradictory as they continue to toggle between facing reality and trying to dictate an alternate one.”

Instead of focusing on the coronavirus and vaccine distribution, Trump has sulked over his defeat and spread lies even though the election is long over.

Associated Press: “Trump’s relative silence comes as he continues to stew about his defeat in the Nov. 3 election and embraces increasingly extreme efforts to overturn the people’s will.”