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Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) told "Fox News Sunday" that the U.S. "can't simply blame China as a way to get our country out of this pandemic and the recession and the chaos that's resulted from President Trump's failed response."

Why it matters: Coons was defending Joe Biden for not focusing on the rise of China and its abuses this past week during the Democratic National Convention, claiming that Biden has frequently addressed China on the campaign trail.

  • The Trump administration in recent months has taken a very hawkish stance toward Beijing, which officials blame for covering up the coronavirus in the early days of the Wuhan outbreak.
  • With the GOP convention kicking off on Monday, Republicans and the president will likely hammer Democrats over claims that Biden is not tough enough on China.

What he's saying: "I'll remind you, back in January and February as the pandemic was spreading around the world, it was Donald Trump who was saying positive things, cozying up to Xi Jinping, and it was Joe Biden who was sounding the alarm bells about this pandemic," Coons argued.

  • "Donald Trump, our president, failed to act responsibly as this pandemic was beginning to impact Americans. Today, we have 5½ million infected Americans, 175,000 dead Americans because of the bungled federal response."

Go deeper

Pennsylvania certifies Biden's victory

Photo: Aimee Dilger/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Pennsylvania officials on Tuesday certified the state's presidential election results, making President-elect Joe Biden's win in the key battleground official.

Why it matters: The move deals another blow to President Trump's failed efforts to block certification in key swing states that he lost to Biden. It also comes one day after officials voted to certify Biden's victory in Michigan.

USAID chief tests positive for coronavirus

An Air Force cargo jet delivers USAID supplies to Russia earlier this year. Photo: Mikhail Metzel/TASS via Getty Images

The acting administrator of the United States Agency for International Development informed senior staff Wednesday he has tested positive for coronavirus, two sources familiar with the call tell Axios.

Why it matters: John Barsa, who staffers say rarely wears a mask in their office, is the latest in a series of senior administration officials to contract the virus. His positive diagnosis comes amid broader turmoil at the agency following the election.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
6 hours ago - Health

COVID-19 shows a bright future for vaccines

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Promising results from COVID-19 vaccine trials offer hope not just that the pandemic could be ended sooner than expected, but that medicine itself may have a powerful new weapon.

Why it matters: Vaccines are, in the words of one expert, "the single most life-saving innovation ever," but progress had slowed in recent years. New gene-based technology that sped the arrival of the COVID vaccine will boost the overall field, and could even extend to mass killers like cancer.