Biden to focus on Covid-19, infrastructure, climate and cybersecurity at Cabinet meeting

Tuesday will be the first time Biden’s full cabinet will meet in the White House Cabinet Room. The President’s first in-person Cabinet meeting was held earlier this year in the East Room due to social distancing constraints due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The meeting comes as the White House grapples with a recent spike in Covid-19 cases, which has resulted in rising rates of hospitalizations and deaths. More than 160 million Americans are now fully vaccinated against Covid-19, but many refuse to be vaccinated, and the highly transmissible Delta variant is spreading in areas with low vaccination rates.

The White House has stepped up efforts to tackle vaccine misinformation and carry out more targeted outreach efforts in communities across the country, including among young people.

The president will discuss the push for his twin economic proposals to rebuild the country’s crumbling infrastructure and reorganize the U.S. economy in the wake of the pandemic.

This is a critical time for the negotiations on Capitol Hill. Republican Senate leaders on Monday threatened to block a vote later this week to advance the bipartisan infrastructure bill unless negotiators reach an agreement on it.

The White House and a bipartisan Senate group agreed last month on a framework focused on “hard” infrastructure like roads and bridges. Democrats are also trying to pass a separate bill that invests in what Biden calls “human infrastructure,” which includes funding for paid time off, education and child care.

Biden will provide a national security update to Cabinet members and focus on his administration’s latest cybersecurity efforts.

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The cyber discussions follow a White House announcement on Monday that the United States and its foreign allies accused China of widespread cyberspace embezzlement, including through a massive hack into Microsoft’s messaging system and other ransomware attacks. The move was a dramatic escalation in the Biden administration’s increasingly urgent attempt to avoid further violations.
The national security update also follows his first trip abroad as president, where he attended a G7 summit, a NATO meeting and met with several world leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The president is also likely to brag about his administration’s accomplishments at the Cabinet meeting, including the nationwide vaccine distribution effort and the massive $ 1.9 trillion Covid relief law that provided checks to tens of millions of Americans across the country thanks to provisions including the Expanded Child Tax Credit.

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