(CNSNews.com) - President Joe Biden, a stickler for mask-wearing, was not masked last week, nor was his wife Jill, when they posed for a cozy, indoor photograph with (maskless) former President Jimmy Carter, 96, and his wife Rosalynn, 93.
Other photos show the Bidens wearing their masks as they walked out of the Carters' home in Plains, Georgia.
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in an April 27 update that it is "still learning" how effective vaccines are against variants of the virus that causes COVID-19; how well the vaccines protect people with weakened immune systems (aside from his advanced age, Jimmy Carter has had cancer); and how long COVID-19 vaccines protect people.
On Monday, while visiting Tidewater Community College in Norfolk, Va., President Biden was asked when he thinks the U.S. will reach herd immunity.
"I think the end of the summer, we'll be in a very different position than we are now," Biden said.
"As you know, I've worked very hard to make sure we have over 600 million doses of vaccine. We're going to continue to make sure that's available. We're going to increase that number across the board as well."
Biden noted that vaccinations are now available in "familiar places," such as drugstores and community health centers, so the distribution is "getting better and better."
"I think we're seeing--and there's a debate, you know--and I'll end with this--there's a debate into what constitutes herd immunity. Is it 70 percent of the population? Is it 68 percent, is it 81 percent? The point is that, by the end of the summer--right now, every single person 16 years or older doesn't have to wait in line, can show up and get a vaccination now. My plea to everyone, get vaccinated now, please. Thank you."