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First lady Jill Biden will head to Tokyo for the Olympics opening ceremony

Dr. Jill Biden speaks with military families outside of a private residence in Norfolk on Sept. 24, 2020. (Jonathon Gruenke/Daily Press/TNS)
July 14, 2021

Jill Biden will head to Tokyo for the opening ceremony of the Olympics, her office announced Tuesday.

The event will be much more quiet than it has been in years past after it was announced Thursday fans would not be allowed to attend the games after the capital of Japan declared a state of emergency amid rising COVID-19 infections.

This will not be Biden’s first time at the Olympics. As second lady, she and her husband, then Vice President Joe Biden, led the U.S. delegation during the 2010 Olympic games in Vancouver, alongside then Barack Obama administration advisor Valerie Jarrett and U.S. Ambassador David Jacobson.

Jill Biden is the most visible Olympics attendee the administration has announced so far, as President Joe Biden “is not planning to attend the Games,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki announced during a June 28 briefing. “He will certainly be rooting for the athletes.”

Psaki did say “we will have a delegation from the United States, as we have historically had.”

In the past, U.S. delegations for the Olympic games have been made up of former gold medalists as well as members of presidential administrations. Former President George W. Bush was the last sitting president to attend the Games during the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

Before adding the Olympics to her FLOTUS schedule, Biden has been busy.

On Monday, “Sesame Street” released a video featuring the first lady for its new collection of resources launched by Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit organization behind “Sesame Street.” In the video, she talks to Mexican-American Muppet Rosita with a message about supporting military families and treating everyone with kindness and fairness.

Prior to appearing on the popular children’s show, the first lady appeared on the cover of Vogue magazine to discuss her adjustment to White House living.

The Tokyo Games will feature 339 events across 33 sports with six new sports making their debut: Karate, skateboarding, sport climbing and surfing. The games begin July 23 with the opening ceremony and conclude August 8.

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(c) 2021 USA Today

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