FILE – In this Feb. 7, 2021, file photo, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady celebrates with the Vince Lombardi Trophy after the team’s NFL Super Bowl 55 football game against the Kansas City Chiefs in Tampa, Fla. The Buccaneers won 31-9. Brady won the ESPY for male athlete of the year, Saturday, July 10. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky, File)
Jill Biden is encouraging Arizona residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19, aiming to counter skepticism by declaring the vaccines are safe and have been vigorously testedBy DARLENE SUPERVILLE Associated PressJune 30, 2021, 9:35 PM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articlePHOENIX — Jill Biden on Wednesday appealed to Arizona residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19, aiming to counter skepticism by declaring that the vaccines are safe and have been vigorously tested.“I’m here to ask all the viewers on these TV stations to please make the choice to get vaccinated because it’s safe,” she said in a speech before an invited audience and TV cameras after touring a vaccine clinic at Isaac Middle School in Phoenix.Just 40% of eligible Arizonans have been fully vaccinated.Biden was accompanied by Doug Emhoff, the husband of Vice President Kamala Harris. Biden noted that they “usually divide and conquer” by making separate visits to clinics, but said, “Today our message is so important that we wanted to come to Phoenix together.”She said that Phoenix is the administration’s last stop on a monthlong tour to promote vaccinations, but that efforts to promote inoculations will continue.“It’s going to keep going and going until we win,” Emhoff added.Emhoff appealed to the parents in the room, saying he sleeps better knowing that his son and daughter have both been vaccinated.“I want every other parent to feel the way that I feel,” he said.Outside the school, some people protested the visit, holding signs that said, “You are not welcome,” and waving pro-Donald Trump flags.Cindy McCain, the widow of Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain, sat in the front row of the socially distanced audience of about 100 people, including tribal leaders. President Joe Biden recently nominated her to be the U.S. representative to the U.N. Agencies for Food and Agriculture.
First lady Jill Biden is playing offense in the fight against COVID-19By DARLENE SUPERVILLE Associated PressJune 29, 2021, 10:33 PM• 3 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleDALLAS — Jill Biden played offense Tuesday in the fight against COVID-19, teaming up with an NFL Hall of Fame running back to encourage Texans to get vaccinated against the disease.“Today, we are finally getting back the things that we lost. But as far as we’ve come, we’re not done yet,” the first lady said in brief remarks after she toured a pop-up vaccination clinic at Emmett J. Conrad High School.She was accompanied by former Dallas Cowboys running back Emmitt Smith, who used a sports metaphor to make the same point.“We’re in the fourth quarter, and the game is far from over,” Smith said after the tour as they addressed a group of people who had just been vaccinated.The first lady flew to Texas as part of President Joe Biden’s campaign to vaccinate as many Americans as possible against COVID-19 in the face of growing concern about the spread of a new and more contagious strain of the coronavirus known as the delta variant.Biden had set a goal of vaccinating 70% of adult Americans by Sunday’s July Fourth holiday, when he plans a White House celebration of the nation’s independence from the virus.But while the administration has acknowledged it will fail to meet the president’s goal, the White House has said the president, first lady, vice president and her husband will continue to barnstorm the country encouraging holdouts to roll up their sleeves.Nationwide, 66% of adults have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.In Texas, just under 50% of people ages 12 and older — the demographic being served at the Dallas high school’s clinic — have been fully protected against the disease caused by the coronavirus, according to state COVID-19 data on the CDC’s website.In her remarks, the first lady said just 40% of Texans are fully vaccinated. It was not immediately clear whether she was referring to all Texans or a specific age grouping.“It’s just not enough, which is why I wanted to come here today,” Jill Biden said, stressing that the vaccines in use are safe, effective and free.The Dallas clinic is open to students 12 years and older, school staff, parents and anyone from the broader Dallas community. The Dallas Independent School District is hosting community vaccine clinics at different high schools daily this week.Parkland Health & Hospital System is administering the Pfizer vaccine, which requires two doses administered three weeks apart.As an incentive, anyone getting vaccinated at the high school will receive tickets to the Six Flags Over Texas theme park. They will also be eligible to win prizes, such as airline or concert tickets and gift cards, through a raffle sponsored by Mayor Eric Johnson’s office.The first lady planned a similar stop later Tuesday in Houston, where she was to pair up with Doug Emhoff, the spouse of Vice President Kamala Harris, to visit a COVID-19 vaccination clinic hosted by the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park, their home ballpark.The stop in Houston will be the first joint appearance of the administration for Biden and Emhoff, the second gentleman. They campaigned together several times during the 2020 general election.The Astros are hosting the clinic as part of Major League Baseball’s “Vaccinate at the Plate” program, held during June, which offers incentives to fans who get protected against COVID-19.