36 minutes | May 12, 2021

Dan Diamond “Heady Times”

Dan Diamond has covered health, politics, and the White House for the Washington Post since January 19. What is going on in the international side of the US response to the pandemic? It is “piecemeal,” unclear who is making decisions, lacks a strategy, the approach is “much vaguer” than the domestic response. The US has announced a number of important steps which are “staccato moments.” President Biden came into office with the country “on fire.” His team is still settling, and there is no single person in charge of the international response. The issues are a complex “thicket” full of geopolitical risks. Nonetheless, it feels as if a moment is arriving where the administration is going to pivot to the international arena. Internally, senior officials are “raring to go.” Domestically, Dan has observed closely the four focus groups of vaccine-hesitant people launched by Republican pollster Frank Luntz, one session was a “transformative experience,” another a “total dud.” Perhaps the Community Corps will be able to bring to scale hyperlocal engagement with those who remain hesitant. Perhaps they simply need more information and more time. It’s “heady times,” practicing this form of journalism in Washington. Hypercompetitive, everybody wants a piece of the story. Dan Diamond is the National Health Reporter at the Washington Post 
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