Biden urges Americans to celebrate July Fourth and ‘independence’ from Covid-19

After nearly six months in office, grappling with a pandemic every step of that way, President Joe Biden was determined to party.

“This is a holiday weekend,” Biden declared on Friday as he parried journalists’ “negative” questions about the ongoing U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, “I’m going to be celebrating it.”

Biden wants Americans to celebrate too, after enduring 16 months of disruption in the pandemic and more than 605,000 deaths. The White House encouraged gatherings and fireworks displays all around the country to mark — as though ripped from a Hollywood script — the nation’s “independence” from the virus.

And there is much to cheer: Cases and deaths from Covid-19 are at or near record lows since the outbreak began, thanks to the robust U.S. vaccination program. Businesses and restaurants are open, hiring is picking up and travel is getting closer to pre-pandemic levels.

This Fourth of July, America is back.

We’re headed into a summer of joy – of freedom – thanks to the millions of Americans who stepped up to get vaccinated. To the frontline and essential workers who have made this day possible: thank you. pic.twitter.com/g6cztrJDT8

— President Biden (@POTUS) July 4, 2021

Still, it’s hardly a “Mission Accomplished” moment. More than 200 Americans still die each day from Covid-19, a more infectious variant of the virus is spreading rapidly at home and abroad, and tens of millions of Americans have chosen not to get the lifesaving vaccines.

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