President Biden and First Lady Cheer on American Olympic Athletes in Official Team USA Gear

The president and Dr. Jill Biden donned the Ralph Lauren duds that athletes wear at the Opening and Closing Ceremonies as Chinese officials respond to allegations of human rights abuses

Jill and Joe Biden
Photo: POTUS/Instagram

The president and first lady are rooting for Team USA — and looking winter-sporty in red, white and blue.

Joe Biden and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, showed their athletic spirit in gear by Ralph Lauren, the official outfitter of the U.S. Olympic team, in an Instagram post on the POTUS account.

"Let's go, @TeamUSA! Jill and I are so proud of everything America's athletes have accomplished so far, and we look forward to seeing what you achieve in the days ahead," Biden said. "We're cheering you on every step of the way."

The president, 79, is wearing the Team USA Opening Ceremony Jacket, which goes for $245 on the Ralph Lauren website. The first lady, 70, looks cozy enough for a chilly night in Beijing, where China is hosting the 2022 Winter Games, in a Team USA Closing Ceremony Sweater priced at $495.

Though Biden is supporting America's winter athletes, his administration announced a diplomatic boycott of the Games in December to express disapproval for the country's record on human rights.

"The Biden administration will not send any diplomatic or official representation to the Beijing 2022 Olympic and Paralympic games given the [People's Republic of China's] ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang and other human rights abuses," White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said at the time.

High-level dignitaries are typically sent to watch the Games, cheer on their country's athletes and get a close look at the host country's achievements in technology and development.

The first lady led the U.S. contingent to the Summer Olympics in Tokyo last year.

"The athletes on Team USA have our full support," Psaki also said when she announced the U.S. boycott. "We will be behind them 100 percent as we cheer them on from home. We will not be contributing to the fanfare of the Games."

Chinese officials addressed the controversy surrounding their moment in the Olympic spotlight on Friday, breaking a habit of avoiding questions about the accusations of human rights abuses against the Uyghur population in the region of Xinjiang or their position on Taiwan, the island of 24 million people off China's east coast.

"What I want to say is that there is only one China in the world," organizing committee spokeswoman Yan Jiarong said Friday at the last regularly scheduled daily press conference of the Games, the AP reports. "Taiwan is an indivisible part of China," she added in a follow-up comment.

Officially, the U.S. does not support Taiwan independence but says, "Maintaining strong, unofficial relations with Taiwan is a major U.S. goal, in line with the U.S. desire to further peace and stability in Asia," according to the State Department.

The same official said questions about the Uyghurs and reports of concentration camps in Xinjiang were "very much based on lies."

"Some authorities have already disputed this false information," Yan said. "There is a lot of solid evidence."

The Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics began Feb. 4 and will close on Sunday.

Related Articles