Good afternoon, everyone. As some of you know, just concluded an hour and a half long briefing with seven of our nation's top public health experts on the [Video begins in progress] state of the pandemic, the steps we need to curb the spread of the virus and the challenges of distributing a safe and effective vaccine once one is identified. Before I turn to those issues let me say a few words bout het president's continued to lie about COVID-19. He doubled down on the catastrophic mistakes that he's made. And perhaps, worst of all, he made clear that he still doesn't have a plan to bring us out of this crisis. Even said and I quote, "A lot of people think that masks are not good." Undercutting the easiest and most effective means we have of reducing the spread of this disease. This virus is still taking nearly 1000 lives a day the forecasts show that those numbers are likely to climb this winter. But incredibly -- Donald Trump insists that he wouldn't have done anything differently. Not one thing. Last Friday, we learned that another one of the thousands Americans died due to this virus and it continues to rise. And the very same day that we reported 1,000 deaths on Friday and the very same day Canada reported that not one person died of COVID-19 in Canada. Trump wouldn't have done anything differently? If you're a parent in American preparing for another day that your child can't attend school -- if you are grieving the loss of a son or daughter, mother or father, husband or wife, if you're a small business owner who is on the brink of total bankruptcy who can't open or can't go back to work because the virus is still spreading in your community -- how does it make you feel to hear the president say he wouldn't have done anything differently? And if he gets four more years why should we expect anything to change? All president had to offer last night, President Trump, was the same weak and feckless inaction, the same lies and empty promises that we have seen from the very beginning. He still won't accept any responsibility. He still won't' offer a plan. And last night, he repeated what he said so many times before that even if he continues to offer only failing indifference someday the virus is going to go away by a miracle. Even if he does nothing it's going to go away by a miracle. It won't go away like a miracle. In fact, even if it get -- even if we get a vaccine it will not be available for most populations well into the 2021. You know, so we're heading into a -- a very dangerous autumn. The fact that the University of Washington model which the White House has previously touted projects that cases and deaths are going to spike this November and an additional by 215,000 Americans are going to die. Begin to spike in November but by the first of the year 215,000 will be dead additionally. That's more than already died. We need leadership right now to prevent that from happening. The same university the model shows the University of Washington model shows if there is universal masking these deaths could be projected -- these deaths could be cut in half. We could say between now and the end of the year 100,000 lives. Let's assume they're off by half on all of this. 50,000 lives. 150,000 dead. Donald Trump's own director of CDC told him wearing a mask is the single most important step we can take to curb this virus. Here's what he said, he said, "I might go so far as to say, that this face mask" and he held up a face mask, not this one, "is more guaranteed to protect me against COVID than when I take a COVID vaccine." End of quote. You know, I spoke with the experts today about additional steps we can take to prevent needless deaths and suffering between now and a universal vaccine being made available. Uniform national guidelines they said and standards on social distancing that can be applied in particular circumstances in states and communities on their particular -- based on their particular circumstance. More effective approaches on testing and tracing. If we do these things between now and January we can save even more lives. Last night, Donald Trump indicated he has no interest in doing these things. Folks, president's first responsibility is to protect the American people and he won't. It's utterly disqualifying. I also spoke to the experts this morning about the paramount importance of preparing now for a swift, organized, free distribution of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine when it arrives and I'm profoundly grateful for the scientists and the researchers working tirelessly to ensure that a safe and effective vaccine becomes reality as soon as possible. These scientists carry the hopes of our nation our entire nation and the entire world. When the work comes to fruition and it will, there will be no doubt it will save lives. But scientific breakthroughs don't care about calendars any more than the virus does. They certainly don't adhere to election cycles. And their timing, their approval and their distribution should never, ever be distorted by political considerations. It should be determined by science and safety alone. A vaccine would offer a way back to normalcy and a path toward better days for all of us. Not only here but around the world. That's not going to happen overnight. Once we have it it is going to take months to distribute it to the entire population. I'm more hopeful than ever in the power of science to get us there. One thing is certain -- we can't allow politics to interfere with the vaccine in any way. Americans have had to endure President Trump's incompetence and dishonesty when it comes to testing and personal protective equipment. We can't afford to repeat those fiascos when it comes to a vaccine -- when it occurs. The stakes are too high. American families have already suffered and sacrificed too much. So let me be clear. I trust vaccines. I trust scientists but I don't trust Donald Trump. And at this moment the American people can't either. Last week, Senator Harris and I laid out three questions this administration is going to have to answer to ensure the American people that politics will not play a role whatsoever in the vaccine process. If Donald Trump can't give answers and his administration can't give answers to these three questions the American people should not have confidence. But if they can, they should have confidence in the transparency they need to trust a vaccine and adopt it in numbers that will make a difference. First question -- what criteria will be used to ensure that a vaccine meets the scientific standard of safety and effectiveness? What's the criteria? Second -- if the administration green lights a vaccine, who will validate that the decision was driven by science rather than politics? What group of scientists will that be? And thirdly, how can we be sure that the distribution of the vaccine will take place safely, cost free and without a hint of favoritism? The fact of the matter is -- development of vaccine is only part of the battle. Distributing a vaccine to the entire population is as complex and challenging and it's one of the most sensitive military operations. I have been calling for an effective distribution plan to be laid out for months. If I'm elected president I will begin by implementing an effective distribution plan from the minute I take office. That's what I discussed with the experts in the briefing today I laid out a clear plan. They include a detailed timetable for when people will get the vaccine. Clear delineation of priority of populations that get the vaccine. A specific means and mechanism for shipping and storing vaccine at appropriate temperatures. Two of those vaccines if they come forward they have to be stored and shipped at 70 degrees below zero. The division of responsibility at every level of government has to be clear. And I will provide the leadership necessary to carry out that plan. I'll level with the American people. I will take responsibility and I will support rather than tear down the experts responsible for the day to day execution of the plan. I'll simply follow the science. Satisfactory answers to these two -- to these three questions that Senator Harris and I have laid out -- every American including me and my family can have confidence in a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine. This isn't about politics. It's about saving lives. It's about getting back -- getting back to our loved ones and our friends. Making sure they're safe. It's about getting our economy back on its feet. Getting back to the movie theaters and restaurants and ball parks. It's about getting back to our lives and getting America up off the mat. I'm confident we can and will be united in that pursuit. No matter when that breakthrough emerges in vaccines no matter when that hope bears fruit that's when America does as its best. We unite. We do it together. And I'm confident we'll be able to. So I want to thank you. God bless our scientists and researchers, our frontline workers. And may God protect our troops. I'll be happy to take some questions now if that's OK. I have my list here. Everybody sitting. OK. ABC, Mary? Thank you, Mr. Vice President. You just said when it comes to a vaccine you don't trust Donald Trump. Is there a risk that that message that questioning the president on a vaccine could prevent people from trusting the science, from trusting a vaccine when there finally is one? No. Because they know he doesn't have any respect for scientists. He basically said it. You saw what he said when he was out in California about wildfires, scientists don't know and it's going to away like a miracle. It's necessary so people can trust the vaccine. And that's why I said that you have to have this board of scientists that are going say this is why we think this is a good vaccine, why it's approved and has to be total transparency. So scientists outside the government know exactly what is being approved the context of which it is being approved. And why it is being approved. I think it's the only thing that takes care of that. For a vaccine to work though, for it to be effective you do need a certain amount of the population to be willing to take it. That's right. You're saying don't trust the president. Trust me if I'm elected. Are you confident that enough Americans will buy in. Trust -- trust the scientists. Trust the scientists. It's one thing for Donald Trump to say the vaccine is safe. OK. Then give it to the board of scientists. Have total transparency so independent operators and scientists and companies go out and take a look at it. What did you base that decision on? What did you do? Did you pressure the head of the FDA? Did you pressure whomever? I'm not saying he would or will. But that's what has to happen. You know yourself you all know the polls better than I do. The American people right now don't trust what the President says about things relating to science. And if the scientists say a vaccine under the president's watch is safe and effective you will take it? Absolutely. Do it. Take it. Yes. Those three questions I laid out can be answered, yes. Absolutely. Thank you. Caitlin, CBS. Thank you, Mr. Vice President. Just a quick follow up on that. You say that you don't trust the president does that mean you also don't trust the CDC and the FDA currently? No. I don't trust some of the people like the fella who just took a leave of absence from the CDC. He didn't run it but he was the spokesperson for it. But there are some -- when I met with the seven scientists today on the screen here in this room they told me the people that they had worked with at the CDC and the FDA and all of the various agencies and there are some very, very good people there in the ranks. Everyday folks -- not every day -- they're scientists but the people who do the daily work in there. There are some very, very good people. But you know from other items that they have been quashed in things they have said and they have been pressured the heads of those agencies, politically appointed some of them have been in fact, moved. Moved to say, "yes, we can do this" or that or this will work or that will work. It's a simple proposition. If a vaccine is ready to go it should be totally transparent the basis upon which that decision was made. What scientists have looked at it within the government and outside the government and said this is a useful, safe vaccine to take. And so that's all I'm saying. And that's gonna be necessary I'd respectfully suggest no matter what I said in this process. Because all the polling data shows now it's something like only 30 some percent of the American people say if Trump said it's okay -- this is the guy -- the same guy that said inject bleach. This is the same guy that said -- you know -- you want to keep hurricanes from getting to the United States why don't we drop a nuclear weapon on them. I mean -- you know -- there's a reason why they're not so certain. A quick question on the economy. The Fed today announced that their projections for unemployment are actually gonna be lower than expected. In polling we see time and again that President Trump has an edge over you on the economy. Why do you think that is? Well because I don't think the -- I've been out of office for four years. And they don't -- you know -- it's a long time four years ago. We actually created more jobs in the last three years of our Administration than he created in the first four years of his Administration. We actually had more equitable distribution among middle class folks and the like. There were fewer people at risk. But I think it's a matter of my being able to communicate my position on jobs and trade and what I would do. And -- you know -- for example the World Trade Organization -- he loves to batter us around and we've supported the World Trade Org -- just ruled that his trade policies were illegal. Well guess what? We went in what was it 14, 15, 16 times with the WTO and we won every single time. Now why should any American remember that? That was -- you know -- five, six, seven, eight years ago. So part of it is reminding people and then laying out for them what my plan for economic recovery is. But if people have questions about the economic fallout from the pandemic now you have said that you would have acted earlier. What do you say to people who might question how the economic impact could have been different. Even if you acted earlier the social distancing and the closings would still be in place. No, not necessarily. Because you wouldn't be having the high rates of -- of reinfection that we have now. You wouldn't be having 1,000 people a day die. You'd be able to open -- look -- we need national guidance as the basis upon which you can open up. And then dep -- and it varies within state to state. So you may very well be able to open up in a rural area not a -- not a -- a area that is a metropolitan area. Or vice versa because of the -- the degree to which the virus is rampant in that area. We've not set anything out -- we've not laid out as a -- this administration has not laid out the criteria. There's no national criteria. What's the national criteria for opening schools? They still don't have one. You need a national criteria. And you need it to be able to be sure -- excuse me -- that you can open safely and securely. You can have social distancing. You can have the wearing of masks. You can have smaller classes. You need more teachers. The whole range of things. But why won't he lay out the guidance? And even when the CDC initially had stronger guidance what happened? Talk about political manipulation. Say no, no, no, don't -- don't put those out. Don't put those out. Because the president was then saying by the way, testing just causes more -- cause -- it causes more cases to show. It's about being honest. You know -- he loves to quote Churchill and he loves to quote Roosevelt. Well you know, Ro -- Roosevelt said in a crisis in World War II he said it's gonna get worse and worse and worse til it gets better and better and better. And the one thing you have to tell the American people, they're strong. Give it to them straight. Straight from the shoulder. They can handle anything. That's what I'll do. Thank you. CNN. Jessica. Thanks Mr. Vice President. You mentioned the CDC director's comments this morning about the vaccine and how -- I'm sorry about masks and how critical they are. You've previously called for a mask mandate -- a national mask mandate. If you were elected what steps would you take to put that in place? And -- and how would that work? Well first of all I found it fascinating the president said and Biden didn't put in a mask mandate. I don't know how old he -- can -- but -- I'm not the president. He's the president. It's like -- you know -- Biden's problems in these cities are inflamed. I'm not the president. He's the president. I would make -- I would call all the governors to the White House and say -- and because there's a question I think it's an -- can be answered in the positive. A question whether I can mandate over state lines that every single state has to comply. Our legal team thinks I can do that based upon the degree to which there's a crisis in those states. And how bad things are for the country. And if we don't do it what happens. But I would make the case -- I'd make the case why it's necessary. I'd have the scientists arrayed to lay out in detail why. And I would go to every governor and I'd go to governors relating -- Republican and Democratic governors and I'd say we have to have this national mandate. We must do it. And at a minimum what I would do -- I wouldn't walk around saying masks don't matter like he said at your town hall I think it was last night. I saw the tail end of it. That well -- you know -- you know -- masks -- you know -- people don't mask -- don't like masks. Matt -- matter of fact they could be worse. And I think -- don't hold me to this because I didn't see it I just saw it reported. And they -- and Stephanopolous asked why. And he said because waiters don't like them. Waiters touch the food and touch the mask -- I mean come on. But what would happen if say a Republican governor pushed back on you on this? How do you get buy in when it's become so politicized? Would you sign an executive order? Well the question is whether I have the legal authority as president to sign an executive order. We think we do but I don't -- I can't guarantee you that yet. Okay? But if you did you would? If I did I would. Thank you sir. Thank you. Number five. I have to call on my hometown paper, the News Journal. Meredith. Sir, in terms of the distribution of the virus communities of color have been greatly affected. Would they get access to the virus first? How would that work in terms of the distribution of Americans being able to get the virus? Based on the proposal laid out by the experts I spoke with today -- and the National Science Foundation's coordinating with the CDC and other agencies. They indicate that the first group of people that should get the vaccine if and when it is available are people at the greatest risk. And that includes everything from nursing homes to people with serious preexisting conditions that would cause people to be in real trouble. A lot of those people happen to be black and brown. Happen to be black and brown. And so it would be based upon the degree of exposure. It would go first though I would argue -- but I have a scientific board laid out for me. It would go first as laid out for me today to first responders, doctors, and nurses. The people who most ne -- we are most needed to have available to deal with our crises health as well as physical crises in -- in our communities. That would be the first. And it would move to the least. Now one thing that hasn't happened yet and I don't want to -- and I am not a scientist though I hope I'm well informed on this issue. There have been no tests yet on children. So children ironically may be the last people to get the vaccine because it's gonna take time and the -- they indicated to me in 2021 to be able to do the kind of testing on children. Children are less likely to die although they can. And it's more likely that their teachers and the elderly par -- elderly grandparents, et cetera would be exposed. So the first would go to the people most susceptible. But children are gonna have to be part of this. But there's a lot more work that has to be done. There've been no trials done yet on children. And today the government released a plan how they would -- or a loose plan on how they would distribute the vaccine. If you're elected would you reverse course on the plan that the federal government has already put in place? No, they haven't put one in place for real yet, number one. Number two I haven't seen the detail of it. And maybe -- it maybe a very good plan as is. But what I would do is make sure that I brought in all of the experts to make sure what is the best and most rad -- most rational means of distribution. Now look, there are two types of vaccines being worked on now. One is an RNA model that are done by two of the -- of the operations. I think Moderna and I think it -- which one -- who has the other one. And the other is an adenovirus which is a way to ingenerate the immune system to respond. One changes the cell structure. The one that deals with the cell -- the -- the -- the MRNA -- that requires two injections and it requires to be stored at 70 degrees below zero. So in addition to all this there are mechanical issues as to how and where the vaccine -- assuming let's say the Moderna one is picked -- assuming that the vaccine is approved it's a very, very significant difficult problem of how you distribute that vaccine. For example, you couldn't -- you have to ship it in bulk if it's -- if it's the MRNA version. And that means -- you know -- thousands of -- a thousand and a time kind of thing. That means it's gonna go to hospitals and major distribution -- medical distribution centers. It's not gonna go to your doctor like you -- and you can't show up at Walgreens like I did the other -- I didn't -- I -- my doc gave it to me but my flu shot. But I used to get my flu shot at Walgreens. You can't do that because you can't do it in small lots. You have to have two shots, two of them. And so my generic point is there are a lot of not only what is safe to do but distribution issues that are consequential and matter a lot. And so it's not like by the way if I told you tomorrow if I said -- if I were president and said we have approved the following two vaccines or one vaccine. Well the vaccines that are likely to be approved are the -- so far are -- start off with a -- a -- a group of 10,000 doses all the way to 60,000 doses. Well -- you know -- there are millions of people. It's gonna take -- and then you get up to several million. But it's -- takes time is what I'm saying. And it has to be done fairly and well. It can't be based on your tax returns figuratively speaking. It's gotta be based on who is most vulnerable. Who is most vulnerable. Okay? Thank you all so very, very much. Thank you.