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US Sen. Graham Tests Positive for COVID, Says 'Flu-Like Symptoms' Would Be 'Far Worse' Without Shot

© AP Photo / Greg NashSen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., speaks during a Senate Budget Committee hearing to discuss President Joe Biden's budget request for FY 2022 on Tuesday, June 8, 2021, on Capitol Hill in Washington
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., speaks during a Senate Budget Committee hearing to discuss President Joe Biden's budget request for FY 2022 on Tuesday, June 8, 2021, on Capitol Hill in Washington - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.08.2021
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While the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have noted the possibility of "breakthrough" cases, they noted last week that just 6,500 such cases have occurred among 163 million fully vaccinated Americans, with 74% of those breakthrough cases occurring in Americans over the age of 65.
US Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), one of the national legislature's leading Republican lawmakers, announced Monday he had contracted COVID-19 despite being vaccinated.
"I was just informed by the House physician I have tested positive for #COVID19 even after being vaccinated. I started having flu-like symptoms Saturday night and went to the doctor this morning," Graham said in a brief statement on Twitter.
"I feel like I have a sinus infection and at present time I have mild symptoms. I will be quarantining for ten days," he noted, adding, "I am very glad I was vaccinated because without vaccination I am certain I would not feel as well as I do now. My symptoms would be far worse."
The 66-year-old senator received the Pfizer vaccine in December 2020, when the first shots were being administered to senior US officials, including federal lawmakers.
"Thank God for those who produced these vaccines. If enough of us take it, we will get back to normal lives," he tweeted at the time. "Help is on the way."
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have said that new research shows that the delta variant of COVID-19, which first emerged in India and has become the dominant strain of the virus circulating in the United States and is blamed for a worldwide spike in COVID-19 cases. The Delta variant is just as transmissive as the first version of COVID-19 that spread around the world last year, and is capable of infecting people who have been fully vaccinated against the virus. However, the rate of hospitalization and death from the virus is much lower for vaccinated people than unvaccinated.
Across the US, the pace of vaccination has slackened from an April 8 high of 4.4 million doses delivered per day to just 586,000 on July 29, according to CDC data, which shows that since the CDC advised Americans to resume wearing masks again last week, daily vaccinations grew, hitting their highest numbers in more than a month.
However, COVID-19 cases continue to swell, with 103,000 new cases reported on Friday - a number not broken since February 8, when the US was coming out of the worst period of the outbreak thus far. Daily deaths, which lag by several weeks, have remained low, but in areas of the US where vaccination rates remain low, hospitalizations are reaching record levels.
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