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First lady Jill Biden vows to 'continue to fight' in Vogue cover story

In her second solo cover, Biden commented on her position as the president's closest confidant and defender.
Jill Biden
Posted at 5:05 PM, Jul 03, 2024

The role of a first lady has never been officially defined in politics, yet for first lady — and Vogue's latest cover star —  Jill Biden, the position seems to carry weight as if it has.

The first lady encountered renewed scrutiny following her husband's rocky first debate in June, with some conservative figures likening her steadfast support of an aging president to an unwillingness to let go of her own political power.

But in her cover story, published by Vogue on Monday though written pre-debate, first lady Jill Biden is defending her role as the president's closest confidant, fiercest defender and human megaphone.

"If people knew what Joe's done — with the recovery act, and infrastructure, and CHIPS ... If they knew all of that — I mean, the bridge is being built in their city and they don't know who did it. They don't know who’s getting the lead out of their water. They don't know who's stopping the pipeline going through the parklands. They don't know," Biden said. "That's why I'm trying to be out there. Why we're all trying. To say, 'This is what we've achieved, and this is how it affects your life.'"

In her second solo cover for the magazine, the first being in August 2021, Biden wore a cream silk Ralph Lauren tuxedo dress and teal earrings alongside the quote, "We will decide our future."

It's a line the first lady told a crowd of the group Women for Biden at an event Vogue attended — but in context, it describes the sense of urgency felt throughout the publication's piece.

Biden uses the word "urgency" to describe how this campaign's stakes are different from those of the past, with Vogue describing this political moment as if the nation is on the "brink." And the first lady believes her husband's second term can help the U.S. step away from it.

"She really believes in her husband's ability to get things done for the American people — whether they're his supporters or not," author and White House correspondent Katie Rogers told Vogue. "That's why she's fighting so hard for him to get a second term, because there are things they've got left on the agenda. And she's told me she'll travel twice as much, and fight twice as hard, because of the threats she sees — especially to women."

Related: After debate, Biden makes unannounced stop at Atlanta Waffle House

And President Biden's debate performance hasn't changed that feeling. In an editor's note added to the piece, Biden said they "will not let those 90 minutes define the four years he's been president. We will continue to fight," and, "will always do what's best for the country."

Still, opponents of both the president and his wife made their opinions known in comments on Vogue's Instagram post of the cover, which included accusing Biden of "elder abuse," vilifying the magazine for never including former first lady Melania Trump on a cover and calling the move "out of touch."