Fact check: Biden's comment about hurricane preparedness, vaccination predates Hurricane Ian




  • In Politics
  • 2022-10-01 02:51:09Z
  • By USA TODAY
 

The claim: Biden advised people to get vaccinated in preparation for hurricane season on Sept. 27

Hurricane Ian hit Florida's southwestern coast on Sept. 28, destroying homes and flooding streets with its strong winds and heavy rainfall.

One video shared on Facebook on Sept. 27 claims that the day before the storm hit, President Joe Biden advised those in its path to get vaccinated.

"Let me be clear," says Biden in the clip. "If you're in a state where hurricanes often strike - like Florida or the Gulf Coast or into Texas - a vital part of preparing for hurricane season is to get vaccinated now. Everything is more complicated if you're not vaccinated and a hurricane or a natural disaster hits."

The post garnered over 70,000 views in less than a week.

But the claim gets the timeframe wrong.

Biden made those remarks in 2021 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, not in 2022.

USA TODAY reached out to the social media user who shared the claim for comment.

Biden's comments were from a year ago

Biden delivered the comments shown in the clip on Aug. 10, 2021, prior to a White House briefing from public health and Homeland Security officials on how the COVID-19 pandemic was impacting hurricane preparedness.

In his speech, Biden noted that the country was approaching "the peak of Atlantic hurricane season" and experiencing a rise in cases of the COVID-19 Delta variant at the same time, according to a White House transcript.

He said that people should get vaccinated to protect them from contracting COVID-19 if they should need to evacuate their homes or stay at a shelter during a natural disaster, USA TODAY reported.

Fact check: Biden comment on COVID-19 vaccines and hurricanes misconstrued

Biden did discuss actions his administration was taking ahead of Hurricane Ian in a Sept. 27 White House address, but none of his comments referenced vaccinations. He noted hundreds of Federal Emergency Management Agency personnel and thousands of National Guardsmen had already deployed to the state ahead of the storm.

Biden also spoke with Florida officials about their preparations, according to the White House's summary of the calls. The summary makes no mention of vaccinations. There is likewise no mention of vaccines on a Sept. 28 White House fact sheet detailing the administration's preparations for the storm.

PolitiFact and AFP also debunked this claim.

Our rating: False

Based on our research, we rate FALSE the claim that Biden advised people to get vaccinated in preparation for hurricane season on Sept. 27. Biden made the remarks in the video clip in 2021, amid the COVID-19 pandemic. He said people should get vaccinated to prevent catching COVID-19 if they evacuate or stay at a shelter during a natural disaster. He made no such statement on Sept. 27 this year.

Our fact-check sources:

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Our fact-check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Biden spoke about vaccinations amid hurricane 2021 season

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