White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Friday that President Biden will not be taking part in a pregame interview ahead of Super Bowl LVII on Sunday.
Jean-Pierre said Biden, fresh off Tuesday night’s State of the Union address, had been “looking forward” to an interview with Fox Soul—a live streaming platform aimed at Black Americans—but that the Fox Corp., which is airing the Super Bowl on its broadcast network, opted out.
The pregame interview with the President has become something of a tradition going back to 2004 when CBS Sports’ Jim Nantz sat down with then President George W. Bush.
Since then, the interview has usually been conducted by an anchor or reporter from the news division of the network airing the game. Biden sat down with Lester Holt last year for a Super Bowl pregame interview when NBC had rights to the game, and with Norah O’Donnell for a Super Bowl pregame interview in 2021 when CBS had the rights.
An interview with the Fox Soul network—had it worked out—could have allowed the White House a workaround so that Biden could still participate in the traditional pre-game discussion with a Fox-aligned outlet without having to sit with one of Fox News’ conservative-leaning anchors or reporters.