The Perfect Enemy | Biden calls COVID pandemic over in “60 Minutes” interview
October 5, 2022
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President Biden declared the COVID-19 pandemic “over” in an interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes” airing Sunday evening.

What he’s saying: “The pandemic is over,” Biden told CBS’ Scott Pelley. “We still have a problem with Covid. We’re still doing a lot of work on it. … but the pandemic is over.”

  • “If you notice, no one’s wearing masks. Everybody seems to be in pretty good shape. And so I think it’s changing. And I think this is a perfect example of it,” added Biden in the interview, filmed before he flew to the U.K. to attend Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral.

The big picture: The Biden administration last month extended the public health emergency declaration for COVID through Oct. 13.

By the numbers: There were just over 440,000 new COVID cases and nearly 3,000 deaths from the virus in the U.S. in the past week, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

  • That compares with the record high of 5.6 million-plus cases over seven days last January and the record of more than 23,300 deaths over seven days in January 2021, according to JHU.

Of note: Biden said during his “60 Minutes” interview that the “impact on the psyche of the American people as a consequence of the pandemic is profound.”

  • COVID “has changed everything. … people’s attitudes about themselves, their families, about the state of the nation, about the state of their communities. And so there’s a lot of uncertainty out there, a great deal of uncertainty,” Biden said, noting “we lost a million people” to COVID.
  • “When I got elected, only 2 million people had been vaccinated. I got 220 million,” he added about his administration’s COVID vaccination rollout. “We were left in a very difficult situation. It’s been a very difficult time.”

Editor’s note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.