Dear Friends,

Last month, our country passed the tragic milestone of over 200,000 deaths from the coronavirus, a number that includes over 16,000 Texans. Shutdowns brought on by the pandemic have taken a toll on our economy and changed life as we know it, in Texas 12 and across the country. America’s economy was booming before the coronavirus—with our Fort Worth metroplex among the fastest-growing regions in the country—and now the most reliable thing that will keep us safe as we begin a booming recovery is an effective and widely available vaccine.

I and my colleagues in Congress have been receiving important briefings on Operation Warp Speed, the Administration’s historic plan to deliver a coronavirus vaccine to the public in record time. This effort will develop and deploy a vaccine faster than ever before in our history, with a goal to start delivering 300 million vaccine doses by early next year.

Operation Warp Speed leverages public-private partnerships between the government and private vaccine researchers, allowing us to draw on the best each have to offer. While typical vaccine development takes up to 15 years, under Operation Warp Speed, vaccine testing, approval, and manufacturing can all occur at the same time, meaning that a vaccine could be developed in mere months. Dozens of vaccines are already in clinical development testing phases, and at least three promising vaccine candidates are in the final stage of clinical trials.

While some people may worry that Operation Warp Speed is moving too fast, it’s clear we must act quickly to save lives and livelihoods. I can share that we are not cutting corners on science and safety, but rather cutting the red tape that can slow down medical breakthroughs. All potential coronavirus vaccines are put through the same—if not a more rigorous—testing process compared to those used for other vaccines to guarantee they are safe.

Congress has a strong part to play in keeping our country on the road to recovery, and I’m proud to work with the Administration to ensure it has the resources it needs. Congress has already made a $10 billion investment in vaccine research and development through the CARES Act, the first coronavirus relief bill, which has been crucial to Operation Warp Speed’s progress.

Key also to defeating the virus is the determination of everyday Americans, including the millions of Texans who have limited their interactions with friends and loved ones to slow the virus’ spread in our state. Our own UNT Health Science Center is already on the frontlines of the vaccination campaign, as it’s been selected to lead the Texas portion of the National Institutes of Health’s nationwide effort to fight disinformation about vaccines in minority communities, which are disproportionately affected by the virus.

Throughout the last century, our government and private researchers have shared resources and responsibilities to produce vaccines eradicating devastating diseases like polio. Operation Warp Speed relies on the same old-fashioned American ingenuity, as well as modern technology and medical developments. There is no other country better suited than ours for the challenge of developing an effective vaccine to finish the fight against the invisible enemy. Our country has the tools and I know Texans have the strength to see this through.


Kay Granger