Vice President Mike Pence became the highest-ranking U.S. official to receive the coronavirus vaccine Friday when he received his first dose alongside wife Karen and Surgeon General Jerome Adams.
‘I didn’t feel a thing. Well done. We appreciate your service to the country,’ Pence said in remarks directly after he rolled up his left sleeve and received his injection.
The vice president, who heads the White House coronavirus taskforce, said he believed that ‘history will record that this week is the beginning of the end of the coronavirus pandemic.’
But the record of infections and deaths stands in contrast to his optimistic tone: there are now more than 310,000 dead since the pandemic began, and in the last week, the record for the daily death tolls has been consistently broke. On Thursday it was 3,270; Wednesday saw the all-time high of 3,656.
There have now been 17.2 million cases, hospitals in areas including southern California are out of ICU beds, and the economy is on track for negative growth in the first quarter of next year.
Pence, however, claimed Trump was right to say ‘we are rounding the corner.’ Trump himself was absent and Pence did not respond to questions about when he would get the vaccine.