Joe Biden Silent About Banning Flights from Africa to Stop Coronavirus Variant as He Holes Up in Nantucket

President Joe Biden takes off his mask to speak about the COVID-19 pandemic during a prime-time address from the East Room of the White House, Thursday, March 11, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

President Joe Biden remains silent about the possibility of banning flights from Africa as a new variant of the coronavirus has emerged.

The president remains on his extended Thanksgiving vacation on Nantucket island at a $30 million compound with his extended family, having no events on his public schedule.

The new variant from Africa is officially called B.1.1.529 and has no settled name to identify it.

The World Health Organization (W.H.O.) cautioned against travel bans until more information about the variant was available, but some countries have already acted quickly to prevent the spread of the virus.

W.H.O. chief

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), addresses a press conference about the update on COVID-19 at the World Health Organization headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, Monday, Feb. 24, 2020 (Salvatore Di Nolfi/Keystone via AP).

The United Kingdom announced a decision Friday to ban travel from some African countries.

Biden’s coronavirus adviser, Dr. Anthony Fauci, told CNN on Friday that the United States had not made a decision about a possible travel ban but that he wanted to wait until there was enough data to support a travel ban.

“That’s certainly something you think about and get prepared to do. You’re prepared to do everything you need to protect the American public. But you want to make sure there’s a basis for doing that,” he said.

Fauci also advised against a travel ban from China when former President Donald Trump enacted one in late January.

More people have died from the coronavirus in 2021 under Biden’s leadership than under former President Donald Trump’s leadership, despite the widespread availability of vaccines.

Biden and first lady Jill Biden shared a Thanksgiving video on their social media accounts recognizing the lives lost to the coronavirus.

“As we give thanks for what we have, we also keep in our hearts those who we’ve lost and those who have lost so much and those who have an empty seat at their kitchen table or dining room table this year because of this virus,” Biden said:

A Thanksgiving message from the President and First Lady.

Posted by The White House on Thursday, November 25, 2021

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