January 21, 2021

Van Hollen Statement on Biden National Strategy to Tackle the Pandemic, New Executive Actions

Today, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) released the following statement regarding President Joe Biden’s National Strategy for the COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness and his new executive actions to address the pandemic: 

“Fighting the COVID-19 pandemic requires an all-hands-on-deck approach. I’m glad to see the Biden Administration hit the ground running with this national strategy to fully mobilize the federal government and improve coordination with state and local governments to overcome this pandemic. President Biden’s plan will help us tackle the coronavirus head-on by boosting our capacity to vaccinate, test for, and treat this disease.

“From the start, I have urged the Executive Branch to make full use of the Defense Production Act to generate the necessary supplies to fight the pandemic, and I am glad President Biden is moving quickly to do so. Biden’s strategy also includes support for our state and local governments – a priority I’ve repeatedly pressed for – by providing new funds and increasing the federal cost share for FEMA and National Guard assistance to 100 percent. Critically, this plan confronts the child care crisis, prioritizes the safe reopening of schools, and will provide our students and educators with more resources to improve learning at this challenging time. President Biden’s plan also commits to addressing the disparate impact of this pandemic on communities of color and will help tackle these challenges by improving community-based services. Last but not least, this new strategy lays the groundwork to reopen our economy and build back better.

“I look forward to working with my colleagues in Congress to implement and build on this plan. As a nation, we must immediately ramp up our efforts to increase access to the vaccine and contain this virus in order to get our economy up and running. It’s time to move full-steam ahead.”