Gov. Jared Polis on Friday said he was “shocked” to learn that Colorado will be receiving far fewer doses of coronavirus vaccine next week than anticipated after the Trump administration’s promise to speed up distribution turned out not to be true.
“We were lied to,” Polis said bluntly. He said he was told by U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Vice President Mike Pence that an increase in doses was coming.
The Washington Post reported on Friday that the nation’s vaccine reserves had already been exhausted when the Trump administration vowed to release them and push out more doses.
Polis, a Democrat, says Colorado was expecting to receive 210,000 doses of coronavirus vaccine next week. “Now we find out we’ll only get 79,000 next week,” he wrote on Twitter.
“I’m shocked we were lied to and there is no national reserve,” he added.
Polis said he learned the news during a Friday morning phone call with Army Gen. Gustave Perna, who, as the chief operating officer for the federal government’s Operation Warp Speed, is in charge of logistics of vaccine distribution. He said it won’t alter Colorado’s vaccine distribution timelines because the state was already being conservative in its outlook.
“My guess is it’s gross incompetence,” Polis said. “I’m not going to attribute a motive of vengeance. I’m going to say gross incompetence.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.Read more at The Colorado SunThe Colorado Sun is a reader-supported, journalist-owned news outlet exploring issues of statewide interest. Sign up for a newsletter and read more at coloradosun.com.