Biden will continue travel to promote agenda despite omicron

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  • Joe Biden
    Joe Biden
    46th and current president of the United States
  • Jen Psaki
    Jen Psaki
    American political advisor and White House press secretary
President Biden arrives for a billing signing ceremony for the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act on the South Lawn of the White House on Monday, November 15, 2021.
President Biden arrives for a billing signing ceremony for the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act on the South Lawn of the White House on Monday, November 15, 2021.


The White House does not have plans to adjust President Biden's travel schedule due to concerns about the omicron coronavirus variant, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Thursday.

Psaki told reporters that the Biden administration's health and medical experts have not recommended that Biden adjust where or how often he travels in light of cases of the omicron variant being detected in the United States.

"Obviously, we abide by CDC guidelines, but I would expect and our plans are moving full speed ahead at this point to have the president travel around the country, sell his infrastructure plan, make clear to the American people what he is doing to lower their costs," Psaki said at a briefing. "So you'll see him out on the trail, I would expect, next week."

The White House has not announced specific trips for next week. Biden and other top administration officials have fanned out across the country following the passage of the bipartisan infrastructure bill last month to promote the achievement.

Biden traveled to Minnesota on Tuesday to promote the infrastructure law. The second known U.S. case of the omicron variant was detected in Minnesota on Thursday following a case reported in California.

Biden, who is 79, is fully vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine and received his booster dose at the end of September. The White House has protocols set up to protect Biden from the virus, including testing people for COVID-19 who come in close contact with Biden. Ninety-nine percent of officials working with the White House were vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Biden's deadline for federal workers to get vaccinated.

Still, breakthrough cases have underscored the enduring risks of the coronavirus in the West Wing, and the emergence of omicron has raised questions about the efficacy of coronavirus vaccines against it.

Officials are racing to better understand the omicron variant, its transmissibility, severity and the degree to which the COVID-19 vaccines protect against it.

Officials believe the vaccines will provide at least some protection against the new variant and have been urging Americans to get vaccinated and for those eligible to get their booster shot.

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