Money, MAGA and Democratic meddling take center stage in Tuesday’s primaries

Chet Strange/Bloomberg via Getty Images, FILE

(WASHINGTON) — As Tuesday’s primaries get underway, the influence of big money, the “big lie” and some Democratic groups have meddled in some of the races.

Primaries in several states, including Colorado, Illinois and New York, will also be held against the backdrop of the latest — surprise — Jan. 6 hearing in the House.

Republican candidates remain divided on Donald Trump’s evidence-free election denialism across Colorado’s congressional and statewide GOP nominating contests, which are further complicated by Democratic efforts to boost the seemingly more right-wing candidates — assuming those choices would then backfire in the general election.

Two GOP politicians are on the ballot in the Republican Senate primary hoping to unseat Democratic incumbent Michael Bennet. Businessman Joe O’Dea, the moderate in the race, has focused his campaign on public safety and economic reform.

In stark contrast, Ron Hanks has centered his campaign around the “big lie,” baselessly disputing the last presidential race. Hanks attended Trump’s infamous Jan. 6 rally in Washington ahead of the deadly insurrection at the Capitol.

In this GOP Senate primary, some Democrats have directed their money toward supporting Hanks, the election denier in the race. Democratic Colorado, a super PAC, has run ads highlighting Hanks’ conservative values; and ProgressNow Colorado has simultaneously campaigned against O’Dea. Their thinking — as yet unproven — is that Hanks will ultimately be less appealing to much of the electorate even if the conservative base embraces him.

Meanwhile four Republican candidates are vying for the nomination in Colorado’s newly minted 8th Congressional District. Whoever wins will face off against Democratic Nominee Rep. Yadira Caraveo. This highly competitive election could help decide who controls Congress in 2022, where Democrats hope to preserve their fragile majority.

The candidates in that race include state Sen. Barbara Kirkmeyer, Thornton Mayor Jan Kulmann, Weld County Commissioner Lori Saine and political newcomer Tyler Allcorn.

While there is no front-runner in this four-way primary, Lori Saine, the most conservative candidate on the ballot, may likely prove the easiest for Democrats to beat, given past trends.

The House Majority PAC has run ads featuring Saine. Though the ad does not deliberately promote her, it characterizes her as a “conservative warrior” with strong popular Republican stances. A political action committee backing Democratic candidates has also run ads against Saine’s opponent Kirkmeyer.

For the governor’s race, two candidates are facing off in Colorado’s Republican primary to unseat Democratic incumbent Jared Polis: Heidi Ganahl, the establishment favorite, and Greg Lopez, an outspoken election denier who has emphasized that, if elected, he would pardon Tina Peters, an accused election worker there. (She has said she is innocent.)

The Democratic Governors Association sponsored ads raising Lopez’s profile, emphasizing his staunch conservative stances on issues like abortion access and gay marriage.

Against the backdrop of Trump’s election lies, Democrats play a risky game — potentially advancing election deniers further in the race for elected office.

In New York, the Democratic primary for governor features a three-way race between a favored incumbent who has yet to serve a full term and two challengers on her left and right.

Gov. Kathy Hochul is considered a front-runner after she stepped into the position (and became New York’s first female governor) in 2021, following Andrew Cuomo’s resignation.

Her two primary opponents are Rep. Tom Suozzi and New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams.

Four candidates are fighting for the nomination in the New York GOP gubernatorial primary: Rep Lee Zeldin, Rob Astorino, Andrew Giuliani (son of Rudy Giuliani) and Harry Wilson.

Zeldin was first elected to the House in 2014 after serving in the state Senate; he is a member of the House Financial Services and House Foreign Affairs committees. Zeldin also voted in 2021 to sustain objections to certifying the 2020 election results even after the Jan. 6 attack.

The younger Giuliani’s dad is a former New York City mayor and adviser and attorney for former President Trump. Andrew Guiliani recently had to join a gubernatorial debate from a separate studio, instead of appearing alongside the other candidates, because he refused to provide proof of being vaccinated against COVID-19.

Astorino is a consultant and former county executive of Westchester County while Wilson is a businessman who emphasizes his working-class roots. Notably, Wilson supports abortion rights, according to Politico, which could appeal to liberal-leaning voters in a general election in light of the reenergized national conversation around abortion after the Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade.

In Illinois, the governor’s race is becoming a heated battle between billionaires as candidates enter the last leg of the primary.

Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker — whose family controls the Hyatt Hotel enterprise — is running for reelection. A billionaire in his own right, Pritzker is expected to succeed in his party’s primary.

Two Republicans are fighting for the chance to go head-to-head with Pritzker in the general election.

Richard Irvin was the first Black mayor of one of Chicago’s largest suburbs, Aurora. Irvin and his campaign have heavily focused on crime and taxes, while the former mayor has avoided mentioning other pressing issues such as abortion.

Pritzker’s nemesis — Billionaire Ken Griffin of Citadel, a hedge fund and financial services company — has helped fund Irvin’s campaign: According to the Illinois State Board of Elections website, Griffin has donated $50 million. Griffin also poured millions in 2018 against Pritzker during his first run for governor of Illinois.

Pritzker and the DGA have spent millions trying to ensure that Irvin is not the GOP nominee in the race.

Another candidate is Republican state Sen. Darren Bailey, who received an endorsement from Trump on Saturday during the former president’s rally in Illinois.

Bailey fought against COVID-19 restrictions, is against abortion access and is an avid supporter of the Second Amendment and Trump.

Bailey has also garnered support from billionaire Richard Uihlein — a mega GOP donor who has thrown millions behind Bailey’s run for governor. According to the Illinois State Board of Elections website, Uihlein has donated $9 million to Bailey’s campaign.

The Illinois primary will also display some of the most heated battles involving incumbent candidates drawn into the same congressional district.

GOP Reps. Mary Miller and Rodney Davis will face off against each other in Tuesday’s primary.

Davis voted to certify the 2020 election and supported a proposal for a bipartisan Jan. 6 commission. On the other hand, Miller voted against certifying the 2020 election results.

Trump endorsed Miller in the race earlier this year and held a rally for her last weekend where Miller spoke on the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe, saying that it was a “historic victory for white life.”

“President Trump, on behalf of all the MAGA patriots in America, I want to thank you for the historic victory for white life in the Supreme Court yesterday,” Miller said.

A spokesperson for Miller told the Associated Press the line was a “mix up of words.”

Davis tweeted to criticize Miller, saying her initial comments were part of a “disturbing pattern of behavior she’s displayed since coming to Congress.”

In January 2021, Miller had quoted Adolf Hitler during a rally in Washington. She said then: “Hitler was right on one thing. He said, ‘Whoever has the youth has the future.'”

Davis has also outraised Miller, $3.4 million to $1.4 million. In addition, the Club For Growth has supported Miller during her reelection.

Over in Illinois’ 6th Congressional District, incumbent Reps. Marie Newman and Sean Casten will face off against one another.

As a member of the progressive caucus, Newman is facing an ethics probe into whether or not she bribed someone into not running for office. She has denied wrongdoing.

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As Trump rails at Cassidy Hutchinson’s Jan. 6 testimony, other aides vouch for her

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 (WASHINGTON) — Startling testimony on Tuesday from former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson before the House committee investigating Jan. 6 drew shock from Donald Trump’s orbit as well as support for Hutchinson’s character — and a rebuke from the former president himself.

Hutchinson, who worked as a top aide to Mark Meadows, Trump’s last chief of staff, was the only witness at a surprise hearing on Tuesday. She testified for nearly two hours about Trump’s frame of mind surrounding the 2020 election he lost as well as the events before, during and after the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the Capitol.

Speaking before the House committee under oath, Hutchinson recalled how she had been told that Trump lunged at a Secret Service agent on Jan. 6 when he was told he could not go to the Capitol with a supportive mob after his speech at the Ellipse near the White House. She also testified that, in a separate incident, Trump threw his lunch at the wall after then-Attorney General Bill Barr gave an interview saying there was no widespread fraud in the 2020 election — and it wasn’t the only instance of Trump breaking plates or tossing tables over, she said.

Hutchinson told the panel that Trump wanted to ease security for his Jan. 6 speech despite being told that people looking to attend the rally were armed. “They’re not here to hurt me,” Trump said, according to Hutchinson, who testified that he went on to downplay accounts that the mob at the Capitol called for then-Vice President Mike Pence to be hung.

Tuesday’s hearing was capped off with warnings from Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., a Trump critic and vice chair of the committee, warning that some witnesses had been intimidated by the former president’s allies.

But it was Hutchinson’s testimony that drew the strongest reaction, with the former president trying to dismiss her as a lowly and disingenuous staffer whom he did not know. Others who worked in the White House with Hutchinson and Trump, however, publicly defended her.

Trump wrote on Truth, his social media site, that he had “heard very negative things” about Hutchinson during her time in his administration and called her a “phony” and a “leaker.”

But aides and former members of Trump’s administration expressed surprise at her testimony, saying it could be further damaging to the twice-impeached former president.

“This is bad,” one aide still close to Trump told ABC News.

Mick Mulvaney, Meadows’s predecessor as chief of staff, echoed that.

“This is explosive stuff. If Cassidy is making this up, they will need to say that. If she isn’t they will have to corroborate. I know her. I don’t think she is lying,” he tweeted.

“That is a very, very bad day for Trump,” Mulvaney added once the hearing finished.

And while Hutchinson’s testimony sparked claims online of lying or hearsay among Trump loyalists — and the Republican Party’s official social media accounts — those who worked in the White House alongside her vouched for her values and her background.

“Anyone downplaying Cassidy Hutchinson’s role or her access in the West Wing either doesn’t understand how the Trump WH worked or is attempting to discredit her because they’re scared of how damning this testimony is,” tweeted former White House deputy press secretary Sarah Matthews, who resigned after Jan. 6. “For those complaining of ‘hearsay,’ I imagine the Jan. 6 committee would welcome any of those involved to deny these allegations under oath.”

Tuesday was the latest in a series of public hearings the House committee plans to hold through at least July, focusing on such topics as Trump’s pressure on the Department of Justice to overturn the 2020 election results and the violent events of the insurrection itself.

The panel’s work come as Trump openly teases a third presidential run, in 2024. While polling shows the public broadly disapproves of Trump’s conduct related to Jan. 6, surveys also show him as the front-runner among the conservative base in a potential 2024 GOP primary field.

ABC News’ Ben Siegel contributed to this report.

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Chris Hemsworth turns ‘Thor’ premiere into family date night with wife and kids

Walt Disney Studios

Chris Hemsworth turned the Australian premiere of Thor: Love and Thunder into a family date night.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe actor, 38, brought along wife Elsa Pataky and their twin sons, Tristan and Sasha, for the star-studded event at the Entertainment Quarter in Sydney on Monday.

Hemsworth kept things casual with an all-black look, pairing a T-shirt with a blazer and pants while Pataky rocked a black dress with cut-outs and sequins at the top for a hint of sparkle.

The couple’s 8-year-old sons wore their best red carpet ensembles as they adorably clung to their dad while posing for photos.

Hemsworth and Pataky, who married in December 2010, also share a 10-year-old daughter, India.

Thor: Love and Thunder sees Taika Waititi returning to direct the God of Thunder’s newest adventure. Hemsworth’s titular hero is once again joined by Tessa Thompson‘s Valkyrie, the king of New Asgard. Natalie Portman‘s Jane Foster takes on the title of Mighty Thor.

And keeping it in the family, both Pataky and Sasha are credited with small parts in the movie; Chris’ brother Luke Hemsworth also reprises a small role from Ragnarok.

Playing the movie’s villain, Gorr the God Butcher, is Christian Bale. The Guardians of the Galaxy are also featured in the film, including Chris Pratt, Karen Gillan, Sean Gunn, Pom Klementieff, and the voices of Vin Diesel and Bradley Cooper.

Thor: Love and Thunder premieres in theaters July 8 from Marvel Studios, which is owned by Disney, the parent company of ABC News.

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5 Seconds of Summer, Pitbull, Lin-Manuel Miranda to perform on ‘Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks® Spectacular’

NBCUniversal

The artists who’ll be performing on this year’s installment of Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks® Spectacular have been revealed.

5 Seconds of Summer will rock out before the fireworks display. So will Pitbull, who’ll be performing with country singer Filmore: The two have a song coming out Friday called “USA.” Also performing are country stars Brett Eldredge and Carly Pearce, and Lin-Manuel Miranda and his Freestyle Love Supreme cast. The cast of Broadway’s Moulin Rouge! The Musical rounds out the bill.

Celebrity guests including Craig Ferguson, Padma Lakshmi, Paulina Porizkova and Wolfgang Puck will participate in segments called “The American Spirit,” talking about what it means to them to live in the U.S., since they were all born in other countries.

Meanwhile, the main event, the fireworks, will launch from five barges on New York City’s East River, and will include more than 48,000 shells and effects. The show starts at 8 p.m. ET on NBC and will stream on Peacock.  It’ll air again at 10 p.m. PT.

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Judas Priest, BFMV, Nita Strauss drop off Aftershock lineup; Danzig, In Flames join bill

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The Aftershock lineup is going through some shake-ups.

Organizers for the California festival announced Tuesday that artists including Judas Priest, Bullet for My Valentine, Nita Strauss and Jinjer have dropped off the bill. A tweet announcing the news did not give a specific reason for the change, noting only that those acts are “no longer able to perform at Aftershock 2022.”

As replacements, Danzig and In Flames are among the artists now joining the Aftershock lineup.

Aftershock 2022 takes place October 6-9 in Sacramento. The lineup also includes My Chemical Romance, KISS, Slipknot, Muse, Rob Zombie, Papa Roach, Shinedown, Bring Me the Horizon, A Day to Remember, Lamb of God and Evanescence.

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The Kid LAROI teams with Coca-Cola and Snapchat for new AR experience

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The Kid LAROI has been digitized for an all new augmented reality initiative that will see him performing virtually on Snapchat.

The Australian singer wore a motion capture suit to choreograph the dance moves for his song “Thousand Miles,” which will be performed by his avatar for its new music video. The musical performance, which will only be on Snapchat, will be put on by Coca-Cola for their season-long “Coke Summer Music” campaign.

Fans can tune in on the video sharing app, the Coke Studio website, Snapchat’s Lens Carousel and by scanning billboards in Chicago or New York with a Snapcode. You can also test your LAROI chops by spotting Easter eggs hidden throughout the performance.  

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8-year-old boy fatally shoots 1-year-old girl after finding dad’s gun in Florida motel

Escambia County Sheriff’s Office

(PENSACOLA, Fla.) — A 45-year-old man was arrested after his 8-year-old son found his loaded gun in a Florida motel room, fatally shot a 1-year-old girl and wounded her 2-year-old sister, authorities said.

The shooting unfolded Saturday night in Pensacola and investigators alleged the father attempted to cover up the incident by removing the gun and suspected drugs from the room before sheriff’s deputies were called to the scene.

The boy’s father, Roderick Dwayne Randall, was arrested on charges of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, tampering with evidence, culpable negligence and failure to safely store a firearm.

The baby girl who was killed and her sister are the daughters of Randall’s girlfriend, who was asleep in the motel room when the shooting occurred, Escambia County Sheriff Chip Simmons said at a news conference on Monday.

“Roderick leaves the hotel, but leaves his firearm in a closet [in] apparently what he thought was a safe holster,” Simmons said.

Simmons said Randall’s son knew where his father had hidden the gun.

“He pulls the gun from the holster, starts playing with it and fires a round into the 1-year-old toddler, ultimately killing the 1-year-old,” Simmons said.

He said the bullet went through the toddler and hit her sister. A third child in the room, the twin of the injured girl, was not injured, Simmons said.

Simmons said Randall returned the room following the shooting. He alleged that Randall removed the gun and a bag of suspected drugs from the room before returning.

“This is not how we treat our children,” Simmons said. “Our hearts go out to the rest of the families. This is ridiculous.”

Simmons said Randall has a 129-page criminal history that includes 14 previous felony convictions.

He was booked at the Escambia County Jail on $41,000 bond.

Relatives of the dead girl identified her as Kacey Bass.

Kacey’s mother was not charged in the episode.

At the same news conference, Simmons detailed an unrelated case of another parent arrested over the weekend on child neglect charges. He announced the arrest of a 27-year-old woman he alleged left her 1-year-old son in a hot car with the windows rolled up while she went to a bar.

Madison Haley Hart was jailed on $15,000 bond on a charge of child neglect with great bodily harm, according to online jail records.

Simmons alleged that Hart was apparently intoxicated when she showed up at the Ticket Sports Bar on Saturday night and stayed for about 20 minutes. He said bar employees stopped Hart from leaving due to her impaired condition and called the sheriff’s office.

Simmons said deputies exercised the Myers Act, which allows law enforcement officers to detain people for involuntary detox or alcohol treatment if they appear to be a danger to themselves or others. After deputies took Hart to a medical facility, a relative of the woman contacted authorities and informed them Hart should have been with her 1-year-old child and gave them a description of Hart’s car, Simmons said.

Simmons alleged that Hart denied driving to the bar and never mentioned her child was in a car outside the establishment.

He said that deputies went back to the bar and found the toddler locked inside a car with the windows rolled up. By the time deputies discovered the child, the boy had been in the car for more than an hour, Simmons said.

“We actually have to break the windows out to save this child, who was suffering from heat-related illness,” said Simmons, adding that Hart’s son was treated at a hospital and turned over to the custody of a child protective team. “You can imagine the shock of the employees and of the deputies when we find out that there was a 1-year-old left in a car in this type of heat.”

Simmons used the examples of Randall and Hart to “encourage parents to do better.”

“Ms. Hart and Mr. Randall will have their day in court,” Simmons said.

It was not clear if Hart or Randall had retained or were appointed defense attorneys.

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Some pharmacies limiting Plan B pill purchases as demand spikes

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(NEW YORK) — Two of the country’s largest pharmacy chains, CVS and Rite Aid, confirmed to ABC News this week that they had restricted the amount of Plan B or morning-after pills a customer could buy, following a spike in demand for emergency contraceptive drugs in recent days.

In the case of CVS, the restrictions have since been dropped, according to company officials.

The rise in demand for Plan B pills came after the Supreme Court ruled on Friday to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, which previously set a 49-year precedent for legal abortion in the U.S., at the federal level.

Following the ruling, Justice Clarence Thomas suggested other past court decisions, including the 1965 Griswold v. Connecticut decision — which ensured the right of married couples to buy and use contraception, and the right to marital privacy — should be reconsidered as well.

A CVS spokesperson told ABC News that while CVS pharmacies had temporarily limited Plan B purchases to three at a time, given high demand, the company had since eased those restrictions as sales leveled off.

“Immediately following the Supreme Court decision, we saw a sharp increase in the sale of emergency contraceptives and implemented a temporary purchase limit to ensure equitable access,” the spokesperson said. “Sales have since stabilized and we’re in the process of removing the purchase limits, which will take effect in-store and on CVS.com over the next 24 hours. We continue to have ample supply of emergency contraceptives to meet customer needs.”

Rite Aid, as of Tuesday afternoon, was still restricting purchases of the morning after pill due to high demand.

A spokesperson told ABC News in a statement, that “due to increased demand, at this time we are limiting purchases of Plan B contraceptive pills to three per customer.”

Walmart officials, meanwhile, have not said whether they will specifically place buying limits for morning-after pills. A company spokesperson told ABC News that “many of [Walmart’s] products have online purchase limits in place,” but did not specify what kind of limits, if any, would be applied to purchases of Plan B or morning-after pills.

“During times of fluctuating demand, these limits may change,” they said.

Plan B or morning-after pills, which stop pregnancy before it happens, are different than abortion-inducing pills. Morning-after pills are instead a type of emergency contraception that can be taken orally up to five days after intercourse — though it is recommended that they be taken within 72 hours, to be more effective — to prevent an egg from being fertilized or delay ovulation, thus preventing unintended or undesired pregnancy.

Morning-after pills can be used when a birth control method fails, or if no birth control was used, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Levonorgestrel, the generic name of the drug used in Plan B, is sold over-the-counter under various brand names, including Plan B One-Step, AfterPill, Aftera, EContra One-Step, My Choice, My Way, Next Choice, Option 2, Preventeza, and Take Action.

Another type of morning-after pill, ulipristal acetate, is sold under the brand name Ella and usually requires a prescription.

This article has been updated to include comments from a Walmart spokesperson, and to add new information from a CVS spokesperson on the company’s move to halt temporary purchasing limits on morning-after pills.

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R. Kelly “must be held to account” for 30 years of sexual depravity, prosecutors say

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R. Kelly has faced allegations of sexual misconduct for decades. Wednesday will mark the first time he will be punished for them.

Kelly faces much of the rest of his life in prison when he is sentenced in Brooklyn federal court for a racketeering conviction that involved a dozen separate criminal acts, including sex with underage girls.

Kelly was found guilty of leading a criminal enterprise that recruited women and girls for sex. The charges also included a bribery scheme involving a public official to get a fake ID for Aaliyah so the two could get married when she was 15.

“In light of the seriousness of the offenses, the need for specific deterrence and the need to protect the public from further crimes of the defendant, as well as the other factors … the government respectfully submits that a sentence in excess of 25 years is warranted,” federal prosecutors said in a sentencing memorandum.

Nearly four dozen witnesses testified for the prosecution about Kelly and his inner circle of aides, who prosecutors said preyed upon children and young women for his own sexual gratification.

“Kelly relied upon his fame, money and popularity as an R&B recording star and used the large network of people his status afforded him – including his business managers, security guards and bouncers, runners, lawyers, accountants, and assistants to both carry out and conceal his crimes. He continued his crimes and avoided punishment for them for almost 30 years and must now be held to account,” prosecutors said.

Kelly declined to testify at trial but could make a statement during the sentencing hearing. The defense has asked for less than 14 years in prison, citing Kelly’s traumatic childhood. The defense also cast his accusers as motivated by money.

Prosecutors, though, called Kelly’s crimes “calculated” and “methodical,” and said he has shown “no remorse.”

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Millions remain unboosted, as scientists say 3rd COVID shot provides ‘significant’ protection

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(WASHINGTON) — As advisors to the FDA consider what type of COVID-19 shots should be offered in the fall, new federal data reveals a significant proportion of Americans have yet to receive their first and second boosters.

In May, federal officials authorized the use of COVID-19 boosters for children ages 5 to 11 years-old. However, now, nearly six weeks later, fewer than 10% of those eligible — representing just 1.7% of the age group — have been boosted, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Booster uptake among other young populations also continues to lag, with just 28.7% of eligible adolescents ages 12-17 boosted — representing 16% of the age group — and less than 40% of eligible 18- to 49-year-olds — representing 26.5% of the age group — boosted.

“Despite strong evidence for the value of a booster in providing more complete protection, we are seeing massive confusion on the need for third and fourth shots. The slow uptake has created public health vulnerability as we face a surge from the BA4 and BA5 variants and likely a new variant this coming Fall,” said Dr. John Brownstein, an epidemiologist at Boston Children’s Hospital and an ABC News contributor.

Older Americans — people over 50 — have proven to be more likely to receive their first COVID-19 booster. Over 55% of the eligible 50- to 64-year-old age group, and 72% of eligible people 65 and older have received their first boost.

However, despite repeated encouragements from federal officials for the immunocompromised, as well as those over 50, to receive their second booster shot, uptake for the supplemental doses has been noticeably slower.

Since the rollout, earlier this spring, fewer than a fifth of eligible people ages 50 to 64 have received their second boost — only about 8% of the age group. Uptake is a bit higher among the elderly, with 35% of those eligible — representing just 20% of the age group.

In May, the CDC announced that it is “strengthening” its recommendation for Americans over the age of 12 who are immunocompromised and those over the age of 50 receive their second booster shot.

“While older Americans have the highest coverage of any age group of first booster doses, most older Americans received their last dose (either their primary series or their first booster dose) many months ago, leaving many who are vulnerable without the protection they may need to prevent severe disease, hospitalization, and death,” the CDC wrote in a press release last month.

Health experts suggest that some booster uptake may increase in the fall, should a new generation of vaccines be made available.

“Muddled booster messaging has placed many Americans into a wait and see category, given the prospects for a more well-matched vaccine. While the current booster campaign has likely stalled out, it doesn’t mean we won’t see higher uptake when a vaccine that targets Omicron variants becomes available,” Brownstein said.

During a presentation to the FDA’s independent advisory committee, Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC), scientists outlined data showing that vaccine effectiveness with the current COVID-19 shots continues to wane with the latest variants.

However, a third COVID-19 dose was not only found to provide “significant” additional protection against infection and severe disease, but effectiveness also appeared to wane more slowly.

Although officials said it is still too early to draw conclusions about the protection provided by a second booster, the additional shot has been found to provide “substantial” additional protection among the immunocompromised.

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