Since President Joe Biden took office, about 724,545 Americans have died of COVID, according to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University.
Following days of revelations and claims — masks don’t work, the vaccine was mostly ineffective, and the virus likely emerged from a lab in Wuhan, China — Biden walked up to the reporters on the White House East Lawn, ostensibly to take questions before he left for yet another weekend at home at midday on Friday.
A reporter asked about Paul Whelan, the American held in Russia, to which Biden replied, “We’re working on it.”
“He then seemed ready to make a statement or engage further,” one reporter wrote in a pool report for journalists not at the White House. “As he approached the group, there was a shouted question about Covid origins. POTUS then put both hands up in a shrug, seeming annoyed, and then turned and walked away toward Marine One.”
We would, of course, check the whole exchange on the White House website, but officials there have never posted a word about the aborted presser.
But we did track down who said what. “On COVID origins, will you hold China accountable?” journalist Iris Tao of NTD Television asked, according to the New York Post.
BREAKING: President Biden @POTUS was going to speak but turned away upon hearing my question on #Covid origin and whether he’ll hold #China accountable. @NTDNews @ChinaInFocusNTD @capitolreport pic.twitter.com/jsbMTNPeYb
— Iris Tao (@IrisTaoTV) March 3, 2023
Biden’s dismissive pout came just days after the Wall Street Journal dropped a bombshell report that Energy Department scientists have concluded that the COVID virus most likely emerged from a Chinese lab in Wuhan.
That sent furious Republicans — many of whom have been saying as much for years — into a tizzy.
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On Wednesday, the Senate voted by unanimous consent on a bill sponsored by two Republicans to require Biden to declassify all information on the origins of COVID and on the Wuhan Institute of Virology. A Republican in the House has submitted similar legislation.
Biden, who thinks he doesn’t have to answer to the American people, loves simply walking away from reporters when they ask a question he doesn’t like. On February 16, a Post reporter asked the president, “Is your ability to deal with China compromised by your family’s business relationships in China, President Biden?”
“Give me a break, man,” Biden said with that fake avuncular affectation. He refused to take any more questions, adding, “You can come to my office and ask a question when you have more polite people with you.”
The White House has dodged questions ever since the Energy Department report came out.
“I’m not at liberty to confirm the reporting,” White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters this week. “What I can tell you is, again, there’s been no consensus on this — where COVID originated — so I’ll just leave it there and not try to get ahead of the current process.”
But over the last few weeks, much of the COVID protocol narrative has taken a hit. The New York Times published a piece titled “The Mask Mandates Did Nothing. Will Any Lessons Be Learned?” It was penned by Bret Stephens, an opinion columnist with the Times who won a Pulitzer Prize for commentary in 2013.
“The most rigorous and comprehensive analysis of scientific studies conducted on the efficacy of masks for reducing the spread of respiratory illnesses — including Covid-19 — was published late last month. Its conclusions, said Tom Jefferson, the Oxford epidemiologist who is its lead author, were unambiguous.”
“‘There is just no evidence that they’ — masks — ‘make any difference,’ he told the journalist Maryanne Demasi. ‘Full stop.’”
Then a report came out from researchers who had examined the efficacy of citywide COVID vaccine mandates implemented across the United States in 2021 and found — meh.
“These mandates imposed severe restrictions on the lives of many citizens and business owners,” the researchers said in a study conducted by George Mason University’s Mercatus Center. “We find no evidence that the announcement or implementation of indoor vaccine mandates in the cities listed had any significant effect on vaccine uptake, COVID-19 cases, or COVID-19 deaths, and this is largely consistent for all US cities that implemented the mandate,” the researchers wrote.
Additionally, a “COVID Vaccine Surveillance Report” released last year by the U.K. Health Security Agency found that about 90% of the COVID deaths after 28 days of testing positive for the virus in England from the end of January 2022 to mid-February 2022 were people who were vaccinated.
The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.
Joseph Curl has covered politics for 35 years, including 12 years as White House correspondent for a national newspaper. He was also the a.m. editor of the Drudge Report for four years. Send tips to [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @josephcurl.