US President Joe Biden will hold his first formal press conference on March 25 after 64 days in office - distinguishing him from over a dozen of his most recent predecessors.
“President Biden will hold a formal press conference on the afternoon of Thursday, March 25th,” White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki Psaki announced via the presidential pool on Tuesday.
Biden has been criticized for evading the public and failing to schedule a press conference while in office. In the last 100 years, the longest time a new president has gone without first time speaking with the media has been Biden's term of over seven weeks.
Biden has taken brief questions in an informal manner since assuming office on January 20. In early March, speaking about the future press conference and providing the expected date to the reporters, Psaki reminded those gathered at the White House that Biden takes questions "several times a week", and noting that one time he even "took questions [...] twice."
She explained back then that the president has been concentrating his efforts on passing the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package and on distributing vaccines to US citizens.
Former President Trump had his first news conference 27 days after taking office, former President Obama spoke to reporters after just 20 days, and former President George W. Bush took 33 days before answering questions from the press in a formal environment.
As Biden went almost 50 days without a solo press conference, media speculations emerged alleging that the president may be "hiding" from the American press due to the infamous gaffes and supposed memory failures, such as when he called US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin "the guy who runs that outfit," apparently forgetting his name at that moment.
One of Biden's recent stumbles was his stammering when trying to explain to journalists the main provisions and essence of the anti-coronavirus bill he was promoting. The White House has also reportedly twice cut the live interactive feed to reporters, including one time when the president himself said he was "happy to take questions."