The chief executive of the giant pharmaceutical company Pfizer said last week that during the Trump administration, the President’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, sought to pressure and threaten him into making additional deliveries of the vaccine to the United States at the expense of deliveries it had committed to making elsewhere in the world.
“Jared was asking for a very aggressive delivery plan to the U.S. for the additional 100 million doses. He wanted it all in the second quarter of 2021. To do that, we would have had to take supplies from Canada, Japan, and Latin American countries, all of which had placed their orders earlier than the U.S. and were expecting the vaccine in the second quarter,” wrote CEO Albert Bourier, in his forthcoming memoir.
When Bourier refused Kushner’s demand, Kushner allegedly replied that the U.S. government could “take measures” to enforce its will against Pfizer, a New York headquartered company. “Be my guest,” Bourier recalls was his reply.
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In contemporary politics, the former President wants credit for pressing for a vaccine, but also has many within his political base who are opposed to his vaccine, and who adhere to various conspiracy theories about its real purpose. Bourier’s disclosures may have complicated an already difficult political balancing act as to how the Trump faction tells the story of Covid and its vaccines.