Speed Reads


The glaring omission in Biden's first press conference

Thursday's press conference was President Biden's first since taking office, so there was a lot of ground to cover. Even so, there were some surprising themes in which topics were addressed, and which were glaringly left out of the conversation.

Biden started his White House press conference by announcing a new goal of reaching 200 million COVID-19 vaccine doses within his first 100 days as president. Aside from that, there were no questions and no discussion directly related to the still-ongoing pandemic and the nation's vaccine rollout.

As CBC News' Alexander Panetta pointed out, "sometimes this stuff just happens by accident. Every reporter assumes someone else will ask something about it — and nobody does."

The lack of discussion on vaccine eligibility, vaccine hesitancy, or the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief plan that was just passed stood in contrast to the amount of time spent talking about immigration.

Biden fielded questions on unaccompanied minors arriving at the border, and crowded facilities holding migrants seeking asylum. He also answered questions about whether he'll run for re-election in 2024, and whether Vice President Kamala Harris would be his running mate. He forcefully commented on Republican-led efforts to restrict voting access. He "dodged" on eliminating the Senate filibuster, but there were no questions to dodge regarding unemployment, climate change, or gun reform.

Of course, an hour-long appearance can only pack in so many questions, but Biden's first presser is likely to lead to calls for another one very soon.