Press Briefing by Press Secretary Jen Psaki, August 6, 2021 | Beaufort County Now | Press Briefing by Press Secretary Jen Psaki, August 6, 2021

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Press Release:

James S. Brady Press Briefing Room  •  Washington D.C.  •  August 6  •  1:42 P.M. EDT

    MS. PSAKI: Hi, everyone. Happy Friday. Okay. A couple of items for you at the top.

    Are you — Zeke, are you married?

    Q:  Yes.

    MS. PSAKI: Welcome back. Congratulations. (Applause.)

    Q:  Thank you.

    MS. PSAKI: You know, he's got some bling on his finger. Okay. Most important decision you make in your life. (Laughter.) Okay.

    Today's numbers — on the jobs numbers; obviously, it's Jobs Day — today's numbers are further proof that President Biden's economy is booming. Jobs are up, growth is up, and unemployment is down as Americans get back to work.

    We see that clearly in today's data. This is the fastest monthly job growth in almost a year. Labor force participation also ticked up as more Americans got back to work. Since January, more than 1 million Americans have re-entered the labor force. Unemployment also fell sharply, from 5.9 to 5.4 percent.

    See how we enjoy charts here? I will note the comparison.

    In total, we've created over 4 million new jobs — 832,000 on average for the last three months, with revisions upwards for the last two months. And over the first six months, we've created almost 700,000 per month on average. That's more jobs created faster than any other President's first six months in history.

    In comparison, the previous administration only created 1.1 million jobs in their first six months.

    And just last week, new GDP figures showed the U.S. economy has now made up the las- — the losses of the last 18 months and surpassed the pre-pandemic peak.

    I will note, as always, there may be ups and downs. But thanks to the strong foundation from the American Rescue Plan and the tools it gives us, as well as our vaccination program, positions — positions us to weather any challenges without going backwards or shutting down our schools or our economy.

    I also wanted to note — (a cellphone ring) — that's an exciting ringtone — (laughter) — okay — that, yesterday, President Biden released a statement on progress we've made expanding access to quality, affordable healthcare — a huge priority for him — with the expansion of the Special Enrollment Period, which goes through August 15th.

    In February, we announced — opened a Special Enrollment period to provide all Americans the opportunity to sign up for health insurance.

    In March, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan into law, lowering premiums and saving families an average of $50 per person per month. And later in March, we extended the enrollment deadline to August 15th.

    Five months later, the results are clear: more than 2 million Americans have signed up for health coverage. That's exciting.

    And we also launched a "Summer Sprint to Coverage" campaign earlier this summer, leveraging robust paid media, increased community outreach, and more to get Americans signed up.

    So, for those who don't have healthcare, go to HealthCare.gov and you can sign up there and get more information.

    I also wanted to provide you all an update on COVID. Today, we've recorded — we recorded 821,000 total vaccinations. This is the second day in a row we have got more than 800,000 total shots — the first time we've done this since June — since June 30th and July 1st.

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    Overall, more than 3.2 million Americans have gotten newly vaccinated over the past seven days. And importantly, as we've seen as a trend over the last few weeks, states with the highest case rates are seeing their vaccination rates grow the fastest.

    So, as we've said from the start, that's exactly what it's going to take to get us out of this pandemic: more Americans stepping up and doing their part to get vaccinated.

    In addition to encouraging trends on the vaccination front, we're seeing — with the pace of vaccinations, we're seeing growing momentum on requirements. And we've seen a number of announcements out this morning. We expect that, certainly, to continue.

    So, as you know, last week, the President announced new requirements for federal employees and contractors, and asked the private and public sectors, universities, and healthcare systems, state and local governments, and other institutions to take steps, and many of them are answering his call to action.

    So, this week, one of the largest nursing home chains announced they'd require vaccinations for employees. Massachusetts will require vaccination for nursing home staff. And Maryland and Virginia announced vaccination requirements for state employees. And I'd note: Two of those three states are led by Republican governors.

    Just today, United Airlines announced it will require all of its roughly 85,000 employees to be vaccinated by the end of September.

    So, the message — our message is simple: We support these vaccination requirements to protect workers, communities, and our country. And we hope to see even more action from the public and private sector over the coming weeks.

    Last piece for all of you — lots going on here, as you all know. This week, we — the administration — administration officials held virtual listening sessions with groups representing landlords and tenant advocates to discuss state and local disbursement of Emergency Rental Assistance funds and ways to protect renters from evictions. This is part of our ongoing outreach and ongoing effort to get money out in states and localities.

    Landlords offered ideas on how grantees might speed delivery and increase access to rental assistance, and tenant advocates expressed challenges renters are facing in accessing Emergency Rental Assistance funds — both issues we want to work to address.

    In both meetings, administration officials reiterated the commitment made by President Biden that our administration will not rest — nor should state and local governments — until Emergency Rental Assistance dollars reach Americans in need.

    And as we know, given the rising urgency of containing the spread of the Delta variant, the President's overriding goal is, of course, keeping people — the American people safe and, ideally, in their homes.

    As part of this effort, the CDC has used the legal authority that Congress provided, and developed the requisite record for a new, targeted, and dynamic eviction moratorium focused on counties with high or substantial case rates to protect renters and help to stop the spread of this new and more transmissible COVID variant.

    The administration believes that this is a proper use of a lawful authority to protect the public health, and the Supreme Court has not ruled otherwise.

    Ultimately, we hope that these combined efforts will keep as many Americans safe and housed as possible.

    I usually have a week ahead. I will note for all of you that the President — we expect the President to be here for a few days early next week.

    As you know, the Senate also is expected to be, and we will keep you updated as we know more specific details about his travel plans.

    [ ... ]

    Read the full transcript HERE.



You can visit a collection of all White House posts by clicking HERE.


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