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President Biden’s speech on US’ COVID-19 plans slanted

6 mins read

Claim: A 13 seconds video shared on Twitter by Disclose. tv claims that President Biden said “there is nothing we can do to change the trajectory of the pandemic in the next several months” in a speech. 

The 13 seconds video that tagged President Biden as saying “there is nothing we can do to change the trajectory of the pandemic in the next several months” in a speech, was taken out of the context of a full length 18 minutes speech delivered by President Joe Biden on economic recovery plan. Hence this claim is misleading.

Full text

On 20th January 2021,  President Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th U.S. President. Previous events that transpired before the swearing-in ceremony saw an avalanche of unprecedented issues that challenged the American democracy. Former President Trump’s refusal to acknowledge the outcome of the election  and the protest at the U.S. Capitol that saw protesters breaking into the building was the climax of it all. Though Biden’s victory to the Presidency marked a new dawn for governance by the Democratic Party, it also seems to have come with a bundle of discourse and controversies. 

Just 2 days after Biden was inaugurated as President,  Disclose tv shared a 13 seconds video on their Twitter handle, captioned: “JUST IN-  President Biden now says “there is nothing we can do to change the trajectory of the pandemic in the next several months” . The short video clip that depicted Biden saying those words appeared an irony to what he once promised Americans about the pandemic. President Biden who once heavily criticized Trump for his lack of plans and initiatives to combat the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic causing distress to Americans assured  of  better plans to curb the spread of the virus and the hardship it is causing Americans If he wins the elections.

Thus, it was not surprising that when the video came on Twitter just two days after the inauguration attracted 3.6 million views, 6.2 thousand retweets, 12.9 thousand reactions, and over 10 thousand comments, it was even further featured on jewishbreakingnews  Instagram and the Todd Starnes Show on Facebook with the same outlines captioned. Even more, a  plethora of diverse opinions that followed the video on the comment section depicts multiple polarities; some users acknowledged the claim and criticized the President for not having a plan while others were speculative and skeptical of the information. A typical example is the user, Keith Maniac (@CutItOutPutin) who in consensus with the claim commented that “He harangued Trump all last year, made many pronouncements about “getting the virus under control,” then on day 2 of his administration, “welp, nothing can be done!” He will get zero pushback from the news media.” While another user, [email protected] (@missingahzu) shared a sense of skepticism to the claim “I’d want to see/hear the entirety of this statement… it sounds like it’s being taken out of context” 

Whatever the case may be, American politics has drawn worldwide attention in recent times perhaps because of its long-standing principles of an ideal democracy which has blossomed to become a standard for new democracies. Also, such information that has gained traction can easily mislead several people or planned unrest in a setting that is trying to regain its calm. It is on account of these realities that DUBAWA looks into this claim to clarify the narrative and identify the veracity of the viral information attributed to President Biden. 

Verification

When Dubawa accessed the full speech from where the claimant  spooned, it turned out that Biden’s statement was taken out of context to paint a rather bogus narrative. Though President Biden actually made the statement while delivering a speech, it turned out he was only making emphasis on what may happen if his economic recovery plan is not actualised earnestly. In fact, the speech was delivered by President Biden as a presentation of his plans to combat COVID-19 and the hardship it was unloading on the American people. It was also a justification of why he has resolved to sign an executive order to set the Economic Recovery Package plan into action.

As regards President Biden and the actual context of the statement, “there is nothing we can do to change the trajectory of the pandemic in the next several months” it was stylized to paint a different  narrative in contrast to his actual notions. It was explicitly identified in the complete video that lasted 18 minutes, where President Biden talked at length about why it was important to sign an executive order to adopt the economic recovery plan. His speech   also explained how the economic recovery plan will provide bigger stimulus checks,  more aid for the unemployed, the hungry, and those facing eviction. While also pledging more support for small businesses, states, and local governments; increased funding for vaccinations and testing. Unfortunately, It was in this context that the acclaimed statement was extracted to paint a rather contrary narrative. 

In the complete speech, where the acclaimed statement was taken from, Biden said: 

“In just a few days, it’s just been a few days since I outlined this plan and it’s received bipartisan support from the majority of American mayors and governors. Businesses and labor organizations have together welcomed it as an urgent action that’s needed. Even Wall Street firms have underscored its importance. In fact, an analysis by Moody’s estimates that if we pass our American Rescue Plan, the economy would create 7.5 million jobs just in this year alone.

President Joe Biden: (02:54)

That would be on the way to more than 18 million, I think it was 18,600,000 jobs that they believe would be created over the four-year period with our Build Back Better recovery plan. And with our American Rescue Plan, our economy would return to full employment a full year faster than without the plan, even President Trump’s. President Trump’s now, not some liberal organization. President Trump’s top former economic advisor, Kevin Hassett said, quote, “He absolutely is in favor of this rescue plan.”

President Joe Biden: (03:28)

“This almost doesn’t have a partisan piece to it. We’re seeing the support because this plan takes a step that we so urgently need. More than just a step number of steps. It funds big parts of the COVID-19 national strategy that I released yesterday, we released yesterday. Our national strategy puts us on a war footing to aggressively speed up our COVID-19 response, especially on vaccines and testing and reopening our schools.

President Joe Biden: (04:58)

I found it fascinating yesterday, the press asked the question: is a 100 million enough? Week before they were saying, “Biden, you’re crazy. You can’t do 100 million in 100 days.” Well, we’re going to God-willing not only do 100 million, we’re going to do more than that, but we have to do this. We have to move. The American Rescue Plan also includes economic relief for most Americans who are in need. We’re going to finish the job of getting a total of $2,000 in direct payments to folks. $600, which was already passed is simply not enough. If you still have to choose between paying your rent, putting food on the table, we’ll extend unemployment insurance benefits for millions of workers beyond the deadline that’s now set.

President Joe Biden: (06:42)

It means that 16 million Americans who are currently relying on unemployment benefits while they look for work can count on these checks continuing to be there in the middle of this crisis. The American Rescue Plan also addresses the growing housing crisis in America. Approximately 14 million Americans, 14 million have fallen behind on rent, and many risk eviction. If we fail to act, there’ll be a wave of evictions and foreclosures in the coming months as this pandemic rages on. Because there’s nothing we can do to change the trajectory of the pandemic in the next several months.”

Evidently, the statement was taken out of context and stylized to suit a biased narrative. Sadly, the complete video did not attract  even a thousand views as compared to the one under scrutiny. Information taken out of context can be used to mislead and paint an entirely different narrative as in this case.

Conclusion

The Statement President Biden made was obviously taken out of context. After analyzing the complete speech, it turned out that Biden was only outlining a plan he intends to sign as an executive order to combat the crisis America currently faces, especially regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. This 13 seconds video taken out of a full length 18 minutes speech that was delivered by President Joe Biden is misleading. 

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