Aug 13, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Biden and Harris start joint coronavirus briefings

Biden and Harris

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Kamala Harris joined Joe Biden on Thursday for a briefing on the coronavirus pandemic led by four doctors and one of Biden’s senior advisors — marking the new Democratic ticket's first official day of work.

The big picture: Biden said that he receives these briefings — “on the state of coronavirus here and around the world” — four times a week, and noted that they usually last between an hour and an hour and a half. It's not yet clear how many frequently Biden and Harris will be briefed.

Why it matters: President Trump is underwater with voters on how they view his handling of the pandemic, and this is yet another way Biden and Harris can try to draw a major contrast with the president.

  • Trump recently restarted his own daily coronavirus briefings, which typically feature the president as the messenger rather than his coronavirus task force or Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious-diseases expert.
  • Now, Biden and Harris are putting their team of doctors and medical health experts front and center — even though they met with them virtually.

What they're saying: I’m looking forward to it,” Harris said, according to reporters at the event. “These are some of the brightest minds not only in our country, but internationally."

  • "And as the vice president has been saying since the beginning of this pandemic, it should be the public health professionals that are leading policy in our country to address this lethal pandemic."

Editor's note: This story has been updated after the Biden campaign clarified Biden receives the briefings four times a week, and that it's not yet known how frequently Harris and Biden will receive joint briefings.

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