Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) explained over the weekend why she received her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine before more vulnerable populations, attributing it to a national security policy that aims to “ensure the continuity of governance during national emergencies.”
“I was actually surprised by this too,” Ocasio-Cortez said during a Q&A posted to her Instagram over the weekend, taking questions after sharing a video of herself receiving the vaccine:
“I was expecting we’re going to get it a lot later,” the 31-year-old congresswoman continued. “But– and healthcare workers for the record, health care workers have started to receive it.”
“Not everybody obviously yet has been vaccinated but when it comes to Congress’s access, it’s due to something [called] continuity of governance planning, which is essentially national security planning,” she continued.
“So this actually came from a national security policy and directive to ensure continuity of governance during national emergencies,” she added:
AOC explains why she, a 31-year-old congresswoman, received a vaccine before more vulnerable populations pic.twitter.com/Tw4IV68uEa
— Hannah Bleau 🌻 (@hannahbleau_) December 21, 2020
Ocasio-Cortez remains in one of the lower-risk age groups as officials emphasize prioritizing frontline healthcare workers and the elderly population. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice voted on Sunday to recommend frontline essential workers — including police officers, firefighters, and teachers — and those over the age of 75 — particularly those in long-term care facilities — to stand as the next in line to receive the vaccine.
Top congressional leaders have also received the vaccine, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), 80, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), 78.