By ZEKE MILLER
WASHINGTON (AP) — More than 70% of Americans age 30 or older have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the White House said, even as President Joe Biden is set to fall short of reaching his goal of giving a shot to the same percentage of all American adults by Independence Day.
The Biden administration is releasing the new data Tuesday showing it expects to reach 70% of Americans age 27 or older with at least one shot by the July 4 holiday. A White House official said it is now redoubling its focus on vaccinating younger Americans age 18-26, who have proved to be least likely to get a vaccine when it’s available for them.
The White House said meeting Biden’s vaccination goal is less important than the pace of the nation’s reopening, which is exceeding even its own internal projections as the overwhelming majority of the nation’s most vulnerable people are fully vaccinated and cases and deaths are at their lowest rates since the earliest days of the pandemic.
Still, the nationwide rate of new vaccinations has dropped off precipitously over the past month even as shots have become more available.
FILE – In this June 18, 2021 file photo, President Joe Biden speaks about COVID-19 vaccination shots, in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington. The administration is releasing new data Tuesday showing it expects to reach 70% of Americans aged 27 and older with at least one shot by the July 4 holiday. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)