Dec. 7, 2021: Biden’s Whac-A-Mole Covid problem


Manage episode 311722023 series 2505327
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There’s still a lot we don’t know about the Omicron variant: It could be like Delta and current vaccines will offer robust protection. But there’s also a chance that Omicron could be vaccine resistant, so vaccine makers are readying a booster to protect against the new variant, just in case.

That could be the future: a new variant, followed by a new vaccine booster to defend against it, followed by a new variant… Rinse. Repeat. It’s what we do to fight the annual flu. But it all takes time, and a new coronavirus variant can spread rapidly and kill a lot of people during the process.

And, ahead of President Joe Biden’s highly anticipated video conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin, sources tell NYT’s David Sanger and Eric Schmitt that the president is “expected to encourage diplomatic de-escalation over the conflict in Ukraine,” and warn Putin that “if he orders the Russian forces poised at the border to invade Ukraine, Western allies may move to cut Russia off from the international financial system and seek direct sanctions on Mr. Putin’s closest associates.” How BIden handles this meeting could mean the difference between a free and independent Ukraine and one overrun by Russian troops. No pressure.

Raghu Manavalan is the Host of POLITICO's Playbook.
Jenny Ament is the Senior Producer of POLITICO Audio.

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