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Joe Biden To Hold Full Press Conference By The End Of The Month, Press Secretary Jen Psaki Says

Ted Johnson
·2-min read

Joe Biden plans to hold a full press conference by the end of the month, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters in response to questions of why he hasn’t held such an event yet.

“We look forward to holding a full press conference in the coming weeks, before the end of the month, and we are working on setting a final date for that, and as soon as we do, we will let you all know,” Psaki told reporters at the press briefing on Friday.

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One reporter pointed out that at this point in past administrations going back to Ronald Reagan, the new presidents had already held press conferences, which typically have been held in the East Room of the White House.

Psaki noted that even though Biden has not held a full press conference yet, he still “takes questions several times a week. He took questions twice yesterday, which is an opportunity for whoever is overing the White House to ask him about what is happening in the news on any given day.”

She added that “this president came in during two historic crises — a pandemic like the country had not seen in decades, and an economic downturn that left 10 million people out of work. So I think the American people would understand if his focus and his energy and his attention has been on ensuring that we secure enough vaccines for all Americans, which we will do by the end of May, and pushing for a rescue plan that will provide direct checks to almost 160 million Americans. That is where his time, energy and focus has been.”

Donald Trump held his first full press conference as president on Feb. 16, 2017, and this week in particular there has been some grumbling about when Biden would hold his first.

Zeke Miller, the president of the White House Correspondents Association, said in an email, “Press conferences are critical to informing the American people and holding an administration accountable to the public. As it has with prior presidents, the WHCA continues to call on President Biden to hold formal press conferences with regularity.”

Trump also took questions from reporters, sometimes several times a day, but correspondents have made the case that such access shouldn’t be in lieu of the formal presidential press conference, which have greater opportunities for follow up questions.

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