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The vaccination gap still looks a lot like America's political divide

First Read is your briefing from "Meet the Press" and the NBC Political Unit on the day's most important political stories and why they matter.
People wait in line to get their vaccine at a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination site at Lumen Field Event Center in Seattle
People wait in line to receive their vaccine at Lumen Field Event Center in Seattle on March 13, 2021.Lindsey Wasson / Reuters

WASHINGTON — There continue to be Two Americas when it comes to the country’s race to get vaccinated against Covid-19.

You have the blue, highly urban and mostly college-degree-heavy states that have met — or exceeded — President Biden’s goal of 70 percent of adults having at least one dose by July 4.

And you have the red, highly rural and mostly college-degree-light states that have come up way short.

Right now, 67 percent of American adults have received at least one dose, and the Biden White House had admitted it won’t meet that 70 percent goal in two days.

But to understand why, you have to look at the vaccination rates by state, according to CDC data, especially with the highly transmissible Delta variant spreading in the nation.

"It is clear that communities where people remain unvaccinated are communities where people remain vulnerable," said CDC Director Rochelle Walensky.

Here are the 20 states with the lowest rates:

Indeed, of the 19 states (including D.C.) that have already hit 70 percent, Joe Biden carried every single one in 2020.

And of the 17 states that have yet to surpass even 60 percent, Donald Trump won them all with one exception: Georgia.

By the way, these state rankings are pretty much unchanged whether you’re looking at adults 18 and older, or at 12 and older.

And they’re mostly unchanged from when we looked at them a month ago.

Data Download: The numbers you need to know today

10 percent: The rise in Covid-19 cases in the last week in the U.S., per the CDC.

$1.7 million: The amount of Trump Org chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg’s income that he is now accused of personally avoiding paying taxes on.

33,813,832: The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States, per the most recent data from NBC News and health officials. (That’s 13,340 more than yesterday morning.)

608,410: The number of deaths in the United States from the virus so far, per the most recent data from NBC News. (That’s 272 more than yesterday morning.)

328,152,304: The number of vaccine doses administered in the U.S.

43.2 percent: The share of all Americans who are fully vaccinated, per NBC News.

57.7 percent: The share of all American adults over 18 who are fully vaccinated, per CDC.

Tweet of the day

We have a date for the California recall: September 14

That’s the date that California Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis set on Thursday for the upcoming recall election against Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom.

This is important, per Politico: “The scores of contenders seeking to replace Newsom will now have about two weeks to officially declare their candidacies before a July 16 filing deadline. That also creates an intense time crunch for Newsom’s efforts to correct a legal error and be listed as a Democrat on the ballot: Newsom’s lawyers are due to argue their case in court July 9, about a week before elections officials will finalize the list of candidates.”

Virginia Governor: McAuliffe camp seizes on Youngkin’s business record

Also on Thursday, the AP reported on GOP gubernatorial nominee Glenn Youngkin’s record at the Carlyle Group, a private-equity firm.

“More than 1,000 jobs were moved offshore in recent years as companies were restructured. Hundreds more were laid off after Carlyle instituted a series of cost-cutting measures at a nationwide nursing home chain; complaints of deteriorating service and neglect followed,” the AP writes.

“There are no allegations of illegality or wrongdoing, but Youngkin’s political aspirations have drawn new scrutiny to his dealings at the Washington-based investment firm, where he generated a net worth estimated at over $300 million before retiring as co-CEO last summer.”

McAuliffe fired back, “Glenn Youngkin is an American job killer. He is unfit to lead our Commonwealth.”

Meanwhile, Youngkin this week released his education plan, which includes protecting advanced math classes and the use of advanced diplomas.

Happy 4th of July

Our newsletter will be off next week, returning on July 12. Have a great holiday.

ICYMI: What else is happening in the world

Legal analysts say that the Trump Organization may really be in hot water after yesterday’s indictment.

After yesterday’s Supreme Court decision, voting rights activists are concerned that it will be harder to challenge new GOP voting laws around the country.

It’s official: Nancy Pelosi has named Liz Cheney to the January 6 select committee.

J.D. Vance is in for Senate in Ohio.

Arizona Senate Republicans have extended their lease as their audit continues to drag on.

The Biden administration has issued its first rules to protect Americans from surprise medical bills.

Biden visited Surfside yesterday.