VIDEO: Sununu Claimed That VINI Could “Absolutely” Handle Registrations for Phase 2b -- It Couldn’t
Concord, N.H. -- Within minutes of people in Phase 2b logging onto Governor Sununu’s Vaccine & Immunization Interface (VINI) system to register for their COVID vaccine, many Granite Staters reported that they were unable to sign up and experienced an array of technical difficulties, despite hype from Sununu who promised that VINI could “absolutely” handle the number of people registering for the COVID vaccine in Phase 2b. At his press conference on March 4, Sununu was asked if he had any concern that VINI could handle the hundreds of thousands of registrations once Phase 2b began. Sununu replied, “Absolutely, yeah. It'll handle it. It'll handle it.” Now, Sununu is blaming the website’s troubles on “an unprecedented volume of web traffic,” as multiple reports show that VINI was not able to handle the number of people in Phase 2b who attempted to register for the vaccine - with the Governor apparently having learned nothing about the demand following his last failed registration rollout. According to the Union Leader, “On the first day all those over 50 years old could sign up for the vaccine under Phase 2B, many residents said during the first few hours that they were having difficulty signing up.” NHPR also reported that the website struggled “under heavy demand” from those in Phase 2b. Maybe Sununu should have spent the weekend preparing this critical service for anxious Granite Staters instead of relaxing at his ski resort. “I’m hearing from my constituents and people across the state that they’re frustrated with the broken promises from Governor Sununu, who said that VINI would be a solution to the Trump administration’s failed VAMS program. Clearly, it was not,” said Senator Cindy Rosenwald. “The people of New Hampshire deserve Governor Sununu's full attention on solving this public health crisis, especially when his new vaccine scheduling system was about to go live with obvious and predictable bugs. That he went skiing instead of ensuring the system would work disrespects the concerns of Granite Staters." A Transcript of the exchange:
Q: Governor, of the 2B population, we're talking a couple hundred thousand people, right, 50‐and‐over?
Q: And you're looking at starting that in a couple weeks. As we saw in Massachusetts, any concern that the system can handle the kind of which is going to be a Black Friday moment when everybody over 50 is going to try and get a vaccine? Can the system handle? We saw in other States when they've tried to do that, websites crashed and…
SUNUNU: Perry, can the system handle it?
PERRY PLUMMER: We're using the same registration that handled the 300,000 people, and 120,000 in the first day.
PLUMMER: So we're don't have any concern with that.
SUNUNU: Absolutely, yeah. It'll handle it. It'll handle it.