Conservatives pounce on Biden White House's 'winter of severe illness and death' gloom

"How do Democrats run as the party of 'severe illness and death'?" former House Speaker Newt Gingrich tweeted. "This is madness."
U.S. President Joe Biden speaks about the situation in Afghanistan in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on August 24, 2021 in Washington, DC.

Conservatives are fast at work trying to turn the Biden White House's prediction of a "winter of severe illness and death" for the unvaccinated into a political liability.

White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator Jeffrey Zients gave the doom-and-gloom warning Friday during a press briefing.  

"​​We are intent on not letting Omicron disrupt work and school for the vaccinated," Zients said before turning his attention to those who have not received the shot. "You've done the right thing, and we will get through this.

"For the unvaccinated, you're looking at a winter of severe illness and death for yourselves, your families, and the hospitals you may soon overwhelm," he added before encouraging people to wear a mask, get themselves and their children vaccinated and get a booster shot.

Biden gave virtually the same warning the day prior. "We are looking at a winter of severe illness and death for the unvaccinated — for themselves, their families and the hospitals they'll soon overwhelm," he said.

The Biden Administration released a fact sheet Monday on their Winter COVID plan, bragging how 73% of adults in America are fully vaccinated, which they wrote is "up from less than 1 percent before the President took office." 

When President Joe Biden took office on Jan. 20, 5.8% of Americans had received one dose of the COVID vaccine. At this time, most Americans were not eligible to receive the vaccine, and those in rural areas who were eligible were unable to access the shot.

The White House received criticism for both statements. 

"President Biden's warning of a 'winter of severe illness and death' makes President Jimmy Carter's 'malaise' speech urging Americans to lower expectations seem a cheerful upper by contrast," former House Speaker Newt Gingrich tweeted. "How do Democrats run as the party of 'severe illness and death'? This is madness."

Biden's warning "tells you how much the Democrats have decayed since Roosevelt," Gingrich added, citing FDR's reassurance to the nation during the Great Depression that  "we have nothing to fear but fear itself."

"He's not the president," conservative radio host Todd Starnes tweeted. "He's the Angel of Death."

Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) wrote, "'I'm going to shut down the virus' and 'we're going to have a winter of severe illness and death' are definitely not the same things, Joe."

Tweeting about how Biden boasted more Americans are vaccinated now, Republican communications strategist Andrew Clark wrote: "Before I was born, 0% of Americans had a cell phone. Today, more than 97% of Americans have a cell phone. My record speaks for itself."