LONDON: The White House and senior officials in President Joe Biden’s administration have expressed their frustration last week over media coverage of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases among vaccinated Americans.
A senior official in the Biden administration stated on Friday that the press is reporting misleading information on a breakthrough of Delta variant infections spreading among vaccinated and unvaccinated people.
The official said that the White House had asked these news organizations to tone down the language as focusing on “breakthrough infections” is likely to lead to more vaccine hesitancy.
A member of Biden’s COVID-19 response team, Ben Wakana, also referred to a Washington Post article as “completely irresponsible” for featuring a story about an outbreak in Massachusetts among vaccinated people.
This comes as the Biden administration steps up its efforts to combat COVID-19 misinformation.
Last week, Biden blamed Facebook for the soaring number of COVID-19 infections and said that the social media company was “killing people” by allowing the spread of misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines.
However, a few days later, Biden softened his tone and said instead that he meant to accuse a dozen users who have been responsible for spreading the most amount of misinformation on the social media platform, not the company itself.
With a combined 59 million followers, the 12 online personalities — also known as the “Disinformation Dozen” — include doctors who practice pseudoscience, a bodybuilder, a wellness blogger, a religious zealot, and, most notably Robert F. Kennedy Jr., the nephew of former US President John F. Kennedy.