**FILE** Dr. Anthony Fauci (Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour)
**FILE** Dr. Anthony Fauci (Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour)

Dr. Anthony Fauci lamented the “avoidable and preventable” coronavirus-related deaths in the U.S. as vaccination rates slow and a highly transmissible mutation of the virus gains steam.
During an appearance Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Fauci said 99% of recent virus-related deaths in U.S. are among unvaccinated people, which he called “really sad and tragic.”
He implored those still hesitant to get vaccinated to do so for the good of the country.
“We’re dealing with a historic situation with this pandemic, and we do have the tools to counter it,” said Fauci, President Biden’s chief medical adviser. “So for goodness’ sake, put aside all of those differences and realize that the common enemy is the virus.”
The Biden administration had aimed to at least partially vaccinate 70% of the country’s adult population by the Fourth of July, but came up just short at 67%.
Meanwhile, the delta variant of the coronavirus — a more contagious strain fueling recent outbreaks worldwide — has now been found in all 50 states and D.C.
The variant, first detected in India late last year, is now widely regarded as the most transmissible coronavirus strain. In the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 26.1% of all cases are now caused by the delta variant.
As of Monday, roughly 157.3 million U.S. residents, or 47% of the population, has been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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