Jun 27, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Pence's campaign appearances in Arizona and Florida delayed due to coronavirus

Pence speaks behind a podium

Vice President Mike Pence at a White House coronavirus task force briefing on June 26. Photo: Joshua Roberts/Getty Images

Vice President Mike Pence's planned campaign appearances in Arizona and Florida have been postponed due to rising novel coronavirus infections in both states, NBC News first reported and Axios has confirmed.

Why it matters: NIAID director Anthony Fauci expressed concern this week about coronavirus surges in Arizona, Texas and Florida.

Yes, but: An official with Pence's office clarified to Axios that the vice president will still be traveling to all three states next week with coronavirus task force coordinator Deborah Birx to meet with governors and their health care teams.

What they're saying: Postponing Pence's campaign appearances was done "out of an abundance of caution," a campaign official told Axios.

  • Pence acknowledged at Friday's White House coronavirus task force briefing that cases are rising across the South, but said that "this moment in the coronavirus pandemic is different than what we saw two months ago, to better equip the American people, to respond."

Details: Pence will travel with Birx to Arizona on Tuesday and Florida on Thursday, Pence said at Friday's briefing.

  • Florida has reported over 14,000 people hospitalized from the coronavirus and recorded a massive 24-hour spike in infections Friday. The state has logged over 132,000 infections and nearly 3,4000 fatalities cumulatively since the pandemic's start, per the state health department.
  • Arizona is reporting over 70,000 infections and more than 1,500 deaths, per the state health department. 87% of intensive care unit beds in the state are in use as of Thursday.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with comment from a spokesperson for Vice President Mike Pence who confirmed that the vice president will still travel to meet with state health care teams next week, though campaign appearances have been cancelled.

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