Johnson doubles down on Vaccine strategy as its popularity wanes

LONDON – When Prime Minister Boris Johnson botched his initial response to the coronavirus pandemic, his political fortune faltered, but quickly recovered thanks to Britain’s surprisingly effective roll-out of vaccines.

Now its popularity is declining again – this time after a broken promise not to do it raise taxes — Mr Johnson hopes that history will repeat.

On Tuesday he has announced An campaign to offer vaccine booster shots to people 50 years and older over, net as first shots up to three million children, in ages 12 to 15 — all while repeating his vow to avoid future incarcerations.

Should winter bring a wave? of new cases, however, he was again able to make compulsory mask-wearing, roll out vaccine passports, and urge employees to stay home if possible, under what the government calls it “Plan B.”

“We Are Now” in a situation where so many of the population have a degree of immunity, smaller changes in the way we ask people to behave can have a greater impact,” said Mr. Johnson against a news conference.

For now, the prime minister puts his faith in a double vaccine campaign to protect the UK health service from being overwhelmed, and to keep it from ordering new lockdowns die the economy and enrage a noisy caucus of its own legislators.

“The bounce from the vaccine helped him de first time around and if the booster plan – what a huge one will be? story in British politics – going well and he can say that the rollout is going according to plan, it may be help him,” said Matthew Goodwin, professor of politics at Kent University.

But Mr Goodwin added, “he is definitely vulnerable in terms of his inner critics.”

For a leader who often seems to defy political gravity, the risks are great because, for the first time in opinion polls are falling for months for Mr Johnson’s Conservative Party. Last week he has announced plans to raise taxes and there are growing doubts over his promise to upeconomically disadvantaged areas.

There are also signs that some of the new voters Johnson attracted in the 2019 elections could drift away. “His premiership currently doesn’t seem to have delivered on the things die these voters want’, said professor goodwin.

It was a looming financing crisis in health and social care programs that forced Mr Johnson to break his word and take it in to vote to raise taxes on employees, employers and some investors. This has not only resulted in risk to be party’s reputation for low taxes, but it has also angered several celebrities party donors.

Support for the conservatives fell met five points up to 33 percent, according to a recent poll conducted by YouGov, with the Labor Party up one point to 35 percent, just say in the lead for the first time since January.

Part of Mr Johnson’s difficulty is that while surveys over in general show that the British public is in favor of strict measures to prevent the virus in to check, lockdown restrictions are anathema to a rowdy libertarian wing of his own conservative party.

So while the government didn’t rule out the possibility of further severe restrictions, it is made clear they would be a very last resort after exhaustive “lockdown lite” measures, such as mandatory mask wearing of vaccine passports.

On Tuesday, Mr Johnson highlighted the: success of the vaccination campaign, which he said had yielded”one of the freest societies and one of the most open economies in Europe.” He added, “That’s why we’re sticking now with U.S strategy.”

Public health experts supported in Mr Johnson’s general announcements, although some noted that Britain, as usual, lagged behind others countries on issues like vaccinate young people of encouraging the use of face masks.

“They always come just later than them shouldsaid Devi Sridhar, head of the global public Health program at University of Edinburgh.

Britain, she said, was “on its way” in the same direction as others countries, but with a big delay” in vaccinate from 12 to 15 years, signs up unpredictability plans for mandatory mask wearing and vaccine passports, and boosting testing to see the country through what is likely to be a difficult winter.

Monday decision vaccinate children if young as 12 was controversial, although many others countries, including the United States, France, Italy and the Netherlands, started months ago. The British government’s advice group, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and immunization, had previously concluded that the health benefits for die from 12 to 15 were marginal. That sparked a debate over the ethics of vaccinate children to prevent the spread of a virus that is a health risk to the adults with who she? live and meet.

On Monday, the chief medical officers of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland argued that by reducing the disruption in schools, a vaccination campaign would bring other benefits young people.

Likewise, the decision on boosters places Britain under a growing group of countries die their own burgers offer extra shots for many people in large parts of the world even received one dose, which provoked criticism from David Nabarro, a special envoy on Covid for the World Health Organization.

“I am honestly a little upset to hear that Britain is going to use boosters when this is just taking a very costly vaccine away from people in other components of the world who can’t get them basic two doses, and will therefore be on risk of death’ he told Times Radio.

The question for mr. Johnson is of vaccines and its… light-touch approach of other restrictions is enough to avoid more draconian measures.

Graham Medley, an epidemiologist who advises the government, said that in England, the reproduction rate for the virus was floating around one, meaning the epidemic was still widely circulating, but not spreading exponentially. He said he didn’t expect a return of the high levels of infection of last January.

Still said professor Medley that the diverse experiences of other components of The United Kingdom, met particularly Scotland, where infection rates fluctuated dramatically, showed: how the virus remained unpredictable. No of the models predicted that cases in England would fall in instead of… rise, in July, he said.

“We are still waiting for the full effect of schools open again and people to go back until worksaid Dr. Medley, a professor of modeling of infectious diseases at the London School of Hygiene and tropical medicine.

Britain is still reporting more than 25,000 cases of the virus per day, and hospitalizations run at about 1,000 per day. That’s enough to tax the National Health Service, die also need to clear a huge backlog of procedures die had to be postponed during the pandemic.

Mr Johnson’s gamble in remove most restrictions in July seemed to pay off when new cases dropped in instead of ascending. But with open schools in all of England over the last two weeks, die golf in infections can still come. Fallen Shots Up in Scotland, where schools opened earlier.

Mr Johnson’s guess is that a… new vaccine roll out, with minimum restrictions, will be sufficient to big rise in hospital admissions.

Avoiding further lockdowns is critical for mr. Johnson, said professor Goodwin, adding that the only… of would be its own legislators up in poor, even if measures like mask wearing were reintroduced combat the spread of the virus.

“She really want see us move on and learn to live with it,” he said.

Read More: World News


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