Despite what you may have heard from the Fake News Liberal Media, President Trump’s Operation Warp Speed was a success.
Operation Warp Speed (OWS) was a public-private initiative that President Trump modeled on the industrial mobilization during WWII. Launched in May 2020, OWS was a whole-of-government approach that pooled the resources of multiple pharmaceutical companies. It pursued vaccine development and manufacturing simultaneously to produce not one but two viable COVID vaccines in record time.
“The fact of the matter is, it represented the best of American science and biotechnology, and it was the work of hundreds of thousands of people to get us into this position,” says Robert Kadlec, head of preparedness for the Department of Health and Human Services. “This is what America was made of.”
Operation Warp Speed’s primary goal was to deliver 20 million doses to the states by the end of 2020. To date, the program has delivered 50 million doses and is working with 97,000 receivers. An estimated 20.7 million Americans have received the first dose of the vaccine; nearly 4 million have received both doses.
As reported this week, more Americans have received the vaccine than have tested positive for the virus.
Despite its obvious successes, Operation Warp Speed received the same partisan attacks suffered by every single one of Trump’s initiatives. So while the officials who made OWS a reality are celebrating a success, Democrats claim nothing but failure.
Democrats’ complaints have focused mainly on the logistical failures of local governments. As critics will note, less than half of the doses manufactured have made it into patients’ arms. This failure rests squarely on the shoulders of state governments and the CDC, which asked that it be responsible for guiding states through the last step of the process.
“CDC made it very clear that they owned working with the states on the last mile of getting people vaccinated – that was their turf,” confirmed one HHS official.
The states that have been unable to effectively distribute the vaccine, such as New York, continue to blame the Trump Administration or cite a lack of funds. Other states, such as West Virginia, have managed to use 90% of available doses.
HHS Secretary Alex Azar has accused the CDC of making vaccine rollout for states needlessly complex. He also claims the media intentionally mischaracterized Operation Warp Speed’s goals to make it seem as if the program were failing.
“Outside analysts say the situation in the US may not be as dire as the politically-charged rhetoric suggests,” notes Politico contributor Dan Diamond. In fact, we are administering vaccines here much faster than in Western Europe.
“The crazy thing here is how much has gone right,” says OWS Chief Communications Officer, Michael Pratt.
Rather than congratulate his predecessor on a job well done, President Joe Biden wants to reorganize Operation Warp Speed. He wants the government to have more control over distribution. He also wants to rename the program so that it is no longer associated with Donald Trump. Biden has already asked the program’s top science adviser – Moncef Slaoui – to resign. He will be replacing him with former FDA Commissioner David Kessler. Rumor has it the Administration may try to tap into the distribution chains of major US businesses, such as Starbucks, to distribute the vaccine.