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How to watch Biden’s prime-time address on the anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic

President Biden waving while wearing a blue face mask
President Biden will deliver an address tonight.
(Nicole Hester/ Ann Arbor News via Associated Press)

Marking one year since the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 crisis a pandemic, President Biden will deliver his first prime-time address since taking office.

Biden will give a televised speech tonight “to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the COVID-19 shutdown” and “discuss the many sacrifices the American people have made over the last year,” according to White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki.

“The president will look forward, highlighting the role ... that Americans will play in beating the virus and moving the country toward getting back to normal,” Psaki said during a press briefing this week. “And ... it’s important to note, of course, what steps have been taken and what progress has been made ... so we’re taking an opportunity to do that.”

Here’s everything we know about the national broadcast.

What time is the event, and where can I watch it?

Biden is scheduled to speak at 5:02 p.m. Pacific from within the White House. His remarks are expected to last about 20 minutes.

As is customary for presidential addresses, Biden’s speech will air simultaneously across all major networks. A livestream of his statements — embedded above — will also be available on the White House YouTube channel.

The World Health Organization announced the coronavirus outbreak had become a pandemic on March 11, 2020. Since then, the virus has seemingly touched all aspects of life in Southern California and beyond. The Times looks back on a full year of life in a pandemic.

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What will be discussed?

According to the White House, President Biden is expected to comment on “the more than 500,000 lives lost, and the millions of people whose lives have been changed by the pandemic.”

“He will speak about how this has been the greatest operational challenge the country has faced and the work his team has done to rapidly increase the number of vaccinations, vaccinators and vaccinations sites up and running,” read a statement from the Biden administration.

A pair of studies in Science examine how coronavirus variants evolve in human hosts and why experts are concerned about relaxing restrictions too soon.

The president will also detail “next steps” regarding the ongoing public health emergency and “level with the American people about what is still required to defeat the virus.”

The prime-time broadcast comes hours after Biden signed into law the American Rescue Plan, a $1.9-trillion coronavirus relief package set to provide citizens with financial aid, initiate the process of reopening schools and improve vaccine distribution across the country.


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