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Grading President Biden's first 100 days; 2020 US Census helps Sun Belt states

Get insights on the latest news in US politics from Jon Lieber, head of Eurasia Group's coverage of political and policy developments in Washington:

How would you grade President Biden's performance in his first 100 days?

Well, Biden's done pretty well in this first 100 days. He's done a good job on what's the number one most important issue facing his administration and that's the coronavirus response. He hit his goal of 100 million vaccinations within the first month or so of his administration. And they increased that to 200 million vaccinations, which they hit on day 92. So that's a pretty successful start. They inherited a lot of that from President Trump to be fair. Operation Warp Speed set the US up for success and Biden delivered after he came into office. And of course, the second thing is his COVID relief package, which the US has taken advantage of a favorable funding environment to borrow trillions of dollars and get them into the hands of American small businesses and families and has really helped the economy through what has been a very bad year but could have been a lot worse if the government hadn't intervened. The bill has been very popular, and it set the stage for a follow on bill that Biden wants to deliver for big priorities for democrats later this year, potentially as much as $4 trillion in spending.

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The Graphic Truth: COVID deaths — US states vs countries

Back in March and April, the most severe COVID-19 outbreaks were in Europe — specifically Italy, Spain, and France — as well as the Northeastern United States. In the months since, these areas have managed to flatten their curves through strict social distancing policies, but now the epicenter of the coronavirus in the US has shifted to some Southern states that resisted lockdown measures. Consider that the United States recorded an average of 744 COVID deaths in the seven days leading up to July 16, compared to 74 in the UK and 13 in Italy during that same period. Meanwhile, Latin American countries are now also facing some of the biggest outbreaks in the world. Here's a look at where COVID-19 deaths are rising fastest, broken out as a comparison between US states and other hard-hit countries.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this graphic mistakenly labeled the y-axis as rolling 7-day average of deaths per 100,000 people. In fact, the y-axis refers to the rolling 7-day average in deaths from the coronavirus (not per 100,000 people). We regret the error.

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