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Dr. Fauci says unvaccinated kids still have to wear masks

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A day after the Center for Disease Control and Prevention announced vaccinated people no longer have to wear masks, National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci says unvaccinated children still have to wear masks. He appeared on an interview with CNN’s “The Lead.”

RELATED: WATCH: Sen. Paul and Dr. Fauci clash over COVID-19 origins

Host Jake Tapper asked Fauci if kids who haven’t received the vaccine still need to wear masks. “The children do when they’re out there playing with their friends, particularly in an indoor situation, they do,” Fauci responded.

“I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s essentially over,” Fauci said. “I think this is a very important step in the direction of trying to get back to some degree of normality. Because this is something that everyone has had on their mind … and being able to go around without a mask indoors as well as outdoors is really a big step in that direction.”

RELATED: Fauci says mask-wearing may become ‘seasonal’

Fauci pointed out that children 12-15 can get the vaccine, and alluded that studies show “children of any age” could also receive it.

You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism

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Economy

Biden Administration Expands Obamacare Coverage for ‘Dreamers’

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Friday morning the Biden administration announced it is expanding health-care access for “Dreamers”, a select group of illegal immigrants brought to the country as children. Illegal immigrants enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program will be granted access to health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, according to the White House. Beginning in November, DACA members will be able to apply for healthcare coverage on healthcare.gov and state level insurance marketplaces.

“I’m proud of the contributions of Dreamers to our country and committed to providing Dreamers the support they need to succeed,” President Joe Biden said in a prepared statement. “And that’s why today we are taking this historic step to ensure that DACA recipients have the same access to health care through the Affordable Care Act as their neighbors.”

National Review notes Biden was vice president when then-president Barack Obama created DACA through executive order over a decade ago. The program gives deportation protections and work visas to illegal immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children. An estimated 580,000 people are enrolled in the program. Former president Donald Trump failed to put an end to DACA during his term and the program continues to be fought in court.

Over 100,000 DACA beneficiaries will purchase health insurance in the Health Insurance Marketplace and Basic Health Program created by the Affordable Care Act, the Department of Health and Human Services estimates. Access to Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program will not be incorporated into the White House’s new rule after Biden proposed doing so last year, according to National Review.

“Now as Vice President, I have worked alongside President Biden to take steps to preserve and fortify DACA. Today, we are building on this progress by ensuring DACA recipients also have access to affordable health care, which will improve the health of all communities,” Vice President Kamala Harris said in a prepared statement. “This announcement will bring relief to more than 100,000 people and help them thrive while working to achieve their aspirations.”

The White House did not share a cost estimate for the expansion of Obamacare to DACA recipients. They will be eligible for financial assistance to help them afford the health insurance DACA enrollees are now eligible to purchase.

Biden called for Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform and to give Dreamers permanent citizenship. It’s unlikely that Congress will grant Biden’s wishes, given the failure of the Senate’s bipartisan immigration package earlier this year. Conservatives widely rejected the Senate’s proposal for not being tough enough on the southern border at a time when record levels of illegal immigrants are entering the country.

Immigration is a top issue for voters in the 2024 election because of the surge in border crossings under Biden’s watch. Polls indicate that Americans believe that Trump is better suited to handle the crisis at the southern border with his hardline approach.

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