WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden received his Covid-19 booster shot Monday on camera Monday, pleading with those who are not vaccinated in the process to get the vaccine.
Speaking from the White House, Biden stressed the importance of getting vaccinated as much of the country deals with the Delta variant. As of this writing, 77 percent of Americans have gotten at least one shot, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“The vast majority of Americans are doing the right thing. Over 77% of adults have gotten at least one shot,” he said. “About 23% haven’t gotten any shots. And that distinct minority is causing an awful lot of damage for the rest of the country. This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. That’s why I’m moving forward with vaccination requirements wherever I can.”
Biden is 78 years old and qualifies for a booster shot based on new guidance the CDC issued late last week. CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky authorized the Pfizer-BioTech vaccine for those in high-risk occupational settings.
The President rolled up his sleeve and got his third shot on camera in front of the press at the White House. He said First Lady Jill Biden will also be getting her booster shot as well.
“I know it doesn’t look like it, but I am over 65,” Biden said. “And that’s why I am getting my booster today.”
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, 79, announced late Monday afternoon that he had also received a booster shot, encouraging others to get the vaccine as well.
The World Health Organization opposes the rollout of the booster shots, saying wealthier countries should give vaccines to the nations that have minimal vaccination rates.
Biden defended the decision to roll out the booster shots, saying the United States has done more to distribute vaccines to poorer countries.
“We’re gonna do our part,” he said. “We’ve also given a great deal of funding to COVAX, which is the vehicle that [provides vaccines to underserved parts of the world]. So, we have plenty, plenty of opportunities to make sure we get everyone in the world … vaccinated.”
60 million of the 100 million Americans who have received the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid vaccine are now eligible for a third shot. The Delta variant has affected healthcare workers, teachers, grocery store employees, and other essential workers.