Fact Check: Were there more COVID deaths in 2021 than the year before?

Our weekly check-in with the Texas Truth-O-Meter.

By Nusaiba Mizan, PolitiFact/Austin American-Statesman; radio interview produced by Alexandra HartJanuary 19, 2022 2:26 pm, , , , ,

From PolitiFact Texas:

2021 was the year COVID-19 vaccines became widely available to Americans after a grim 2020. While our resistance to the virus has improved with the vaccine, the pandemic persists.

On Dec. 2, U.S. Rep. Roger Williams, R-Austin, said in an email, “According to the latest data from John (sic) Hopkins University, the number of COVID-19 deaths recorded so far in 2021 has surpassed the total for 2020.”

He linked this increased level of deaths to President Joe Biden and credited the vaccine development to former President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed, a federal agency partnership to accelerate the development and distribution of the vaccine.

We also found a Dec. 21 tweet by Williams that said, “Americans are WORSE off under this Administration than ever before,” citing “More COVID deaths under President Biden than President Trump.”

At the request of a reader, we’re fact-checking this claim: Is it true that, despite vaccine availability, more people died from COVID-19 in 2021 than in 2020?…

Read the full story and see how Williams’ claim rated at PolitiFact Texas. And listen to an interview with PolitiFact’s Nusaiba Mizan in the audio player above.

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