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Data: CDC and New York Times; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

The counties with the most vaccine-hesitant residents generally also voted for Donald Trump in 2020 by large margins, whereas the counties with the lowest levels of hesitancy generally also had fewer Trump voters.

Why it matters: Your politics don't have anything to do with whether you're vulnerable to the coronavirus if you remain unvaccinated.

Driving the news: More than half of U.S. adults have now received at least one dose of the vaccine, a remarkable milestone.

  • But in some states, appointments are going unfilled and unused doses are starting to pile up — potentially a sign that demand is decreasing.
  • Around one-fifth of Americans say they definitely won't get a vaccine or only will if required to, and another 17% say they want to "wait and see" before getting a shot, per KFF.

The big picture: The groups most likely to say they definitely won't get a vaccine are Republicans and rural residents.

  • But experts caution that it's important not to oversimplify the narrative. For example, many ruby-red Southern states have large Black populations as well as white Republicans.
  • Black Americans are among the most likely groups to say they want to "wait and see" before getting the vaccine, and they may also face access barriers.

Between the lines: Plenty of other American adults who haven't yet gotten their shots are planning to — they just don't feel particularly urgent about it. Others are still on the fence.

  • Overuse of the "vaccine hesitancy" label could end up backfiring.
  • “What I'm really worried about is building up this identity of, ‘if you're a Republican, you don’t want the vaccine.’ I think a) that’s not correct and b) it's really, really harmful,” said Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health.
  • And conflating slow vaccination rates, high hesitancy rates and political leanings may paper over access issues. “It could be that people who believe in Trump and voted for Trump don’t want to get vaccinated. It could also be that those places did a lousy job making vaccines available," Jha said.

What we're watching: The federal government is currently allocating vaccines to states based on population. This strategy may no longer make the most sense, although vaccine supply is likely not going to be a problem in any state in the near-term future.

  • “Right now, some states need more vaccines, and other states need more help with getting the vaccines they have out. In two weeks every state will need help getting the vaccines they have out," Jha said.
  • “By early May, the eager crowd will be done everywhere. I would say the federal government should start to help states solve that," he added.

Go deeper

Apr 19, 2021 - Health

All U.S. adults now eligible for COVID-19 vaccine

Healthcare workers getting COVID-19 vaccines on Dec. 16, 2020 in Portland, Oregon. Photo: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images

All 50 U.S. states, plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico, have made U.S. adults over the age of 16 eligible for COVID-19 vaccines, successfully meeting the April 19 deadline set by President Biden.

Why it matters: The landmark speaks to the increased pace of the national vaccination campaign, but will increase pressure on the federal government, states and pharmaceutical companies to provide adequate vaccine supply and logistics.

CDC: Half of U.S. adults have received one COVID-19 vaccine dose

Data: CDC; Chart: Axios Visuals

Half of U.S. adults have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and about a third are fully vaccinated, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Why it matters: COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are still on the rise, CDC director Rochelle Walensky said during Friday's White House COVID-19 briefing. With cases in many states being driven by variants, public health officials have emphasized the need to ramp up vaccinations.

Exclusive: White House pushing vaccine eligibility with media blitz

President Biden after announcing the new deadline for states to set vaccine eligibility. Photo: Oliver Contreras/Sipa/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The White House is launching a targeted media blitz Monday to promote President Biden’s new deadline for states to make all U.S. residents 16 and older eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine, an administration official tells Axios.

Why it matters: Half of American adults have received their first vaccine dose, but vaccine hesitancy among the remaining population risks the country achieving herd immunity.