Thursday, September 9, 2021

The Vax Of Life, Cincy Edition

A new Cincinnati Enquirer poll finds only 56% of Cincinnati-area residents are vaccinated, with 50% fully vaccinated, but nearly 20% saying they will never get the jab.
Almost 1 in 5 Cincinnati-area residents who aren't vaccinated against COVID-19 say they will not get inoculated, and about 1 in 4 say they either want it or haven't decided yet.

The responses come from a newly released Interact for Health poll, called the COVID-19 Health Issues Survey. The Kenwood-based nonprofit, which advocates for health initiatives in 20 counties in the region, held a webinar about the survey Thursday with the community and its health partners.

"The survey is a snapshot in time," Interact for Health spokeswoman Emily Gresham-Wherle said.

The Institute for Policy Research at the University of Cincinnati conducted the online poll, to which 502 people in the region responded, from July 7-16.

"There's a good number of people who want to get vaccinated or are haven't decided yet," said Colleen Desmond, an Interact for Health research associate who provided the survey results online with her team. The reason for stalling, according to this survey, seem to be largely access and trust.

Those who took part in the survey were asked whether they were vaccinated, and if not, why not? Is it easy to find a convenient location to get the vaccine? (Yes, most said.) And more questions.

Interact's data show 56% said they had received at least one COVID-19 vaccine – with 89% of these respondents fully vaccinated – and 44% had not. Among those who hadn't, 18% said they had not decided whether they'll get vaccinated, 19% said they "definitely will not" and 7% said they "definitely will."

The survey results also explored why there is vaccine hesitancy here.

Most who didn't plan to get vaccinated – 72% – shared this reason: "I want to confirm it is safe," the survey shows.

And when asked whom they'd trust for such information, respondents said they most trusted their physician or a health care provider; next, a pharmacist; and after that, their local public health department.
So again, the disinformation by the GOP is working extremely well. More than a third of Cincy-area residents are going to remain unvaccinated. We will never reach herd immunity at that level, and we'll be fighting the disease for years at this rate. 

Meanwhile across the river in Kentucky, the health care system is now completely collapsing. Kentucky has few ICU beds, and Beshear has no power to issue mandates as the legislature is currently in special session making them illegal.

Governor Andy Beshear held another Team Kentucky Update Thursday.

This week’s update came amid a special session of the General Assembly the governor called for over the weekened to address COVID-related issues. Thursday is the special session’s third day.

Gov. Beshear began his Team Kentucky update Thursday on a grim note. He said 60 of the state’s 96 hospitals are operating under critical staffing shortages.

“Our hospital situation has never been more dire in my lifetime than it is right now,” Beshear said. “We cannot handle more sick individuals.”

The governor also said Thursday the state currently has fewer ICU beds available than it has at any other point during the pandemic, now 18 months in.

Beshear said he has called the Kentucky National Guard in to 21 more hospitals around the state to offer logistical and administrative support. The Kentucky National Guard already has been assisting at hospitals in Morehead, Hazard, Bowling Green and Pikeville, but will now help at a total of 24 hospitals across Kentucky.
Soon, people will be dying in triage in hospital corridors, but you sure showed those libs how fucking smart you are, Kentucky.


Biden Burned By BATF Bid

Senate Democrats have all but killed the Biden administration's nomination of gun safety advocate David Chipman to run the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, with all 50 Republicans against him, and at least three Democrats looking to vote him down.

The White House is planning to withdraw David Chipman's nomination to lead the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, according to three sources close to the process.

Chipman is currently a senior policy advisor to Giffords, a gun control group, and faced an uphill battle to Senate confirmation as President Joe Biden's point person on firearms regulation. Sen. Angus King (I-Maine) had previously told the Biden administration and Senate Democrats that he was not supportive of the nominee. Other moderate Democratic senators, including Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Jon Tester of Montana, have also remained noncommittal on the pick.

Chipman, meanwhile, faced universal opposition from Senate Republicans. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell described the nominee as an "anti-gun extremist" and asked for the White House to withdraw his nomination.

The White House declined to comment on the imminent yanking of the nomination. It's unclear when the formal withdrawal of Chipman's nomination will take place, though it could happen as soon as this week.

During his confirmation hearing, Senate Republicans pressed Chipman over a recent interview in which he said new gun owners who have no training should only bring their guns out "if the zombies start to appear." The nominee responded that the comments were “self-deprecating.”

The committee deadlocked on the nomination along party lines, which would have forced the Senate to vote to discharge him.

Chipman isn’t the only high profile White House nominee to be withdrawn amid opposition from members of the Democratic caucus. Neera Tanden, Biden’s initial pick to lead the White House Office of Management and Budget, withdrew in March amid opposition from Manchin and all 50 Senate Republicans.

Tanden ultimately joined the White House in a non-Senate-confirmed capacity as a senior adviser, however, and Chipman may also find a path into the Biden administration. The White House has offered Chipman a role at the Justice Department, per a source familiar.
Republicans have been able to block almost every ATF Director since the NRA lobbied the Senate to require Senate confirmation for the post after Ruby Ridge in 2006, the exception was Todd Jones in 2013, and he quit two years later.  Acting ATF heads are in fact normal, even Trump couldn't get his acting director nominee a hearing and didn't bother as Regina Lombardo is still in charge.

Still, multiple Democratic senators saying no to Chipman is a reminder that rural red states with blue senators still pull way above their weight class when it comes to determining our nation's laws, and that I expect that to continue for a long, long time.


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