The country will narrowly miss President Biden’s goal of having 70% of the U.S. adult population at least partially vaccinated by July 4, according to a White House official who did not want to get ahead of the public announcement.
But the official also noted that 70% of those 30 and older have already been vaccinated a week and a half ahead of Independence Day and that those 27 and older are expected to also reach the 70% mark by July 4.
Currently, 65% of the population has gotten at least one shot and 56% are fully vaccinated, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. At current rates, the U.S. is on track to get to about 67% with at least one shot by July 4.
The coronavirus has been shown to affect older people worse, on average and 87% of those 65 and older have had at least one dose, while 77% are fully vaccinated.
Demand for vaccination rates has slowed dramatically, leaving scientists to be concerned about the rise of the Delta variant and the potential for another moderate surge in pockets of the country with low vaccination rates.
The president had also told Americans they could expect to have small backyard gatherings by the Fourth of July holiday, but large gatherings are becoming common with the lower levels of virus and the level of vaccinations that have been achieved.
The White House plans to demonstrate this with a gathering of more than 1,000 military and frontline workers on the White House lawn on the Fourth of July.
Vaccination and mask wearing have become polarizing topics. Surveys have found that Trump supporters are among the least likely to want to get vaccinated — and there is a sharp blue-red divide by states won by either Biden or Trump.