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President Biden to address joint session of Congress for first time on April 28

President Biden
President Biden speaks during a ceremony Tuesday to honor slain U.S. Capitol Police Officer Billy Evans as he lies in honor at the Capitol in Washington.
(J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press)

President Biden will address a joint session of Congress for the first time on April 28.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) extended the invitation to Biden on Tuesday, “to share your vision for addressing the challenges and opportunities of this historic moment.” The White House said Biden accepted the invitation.

The speech will come just before Biden’s 100th day in office, and will provide him an opportunity to update the American public on his progress toward fulfilling his promises. It will also give him a chance to make the case for the $2.3-trillion infrastructure package he unveiled March 31, which the House is aiming to pass by July 4.

President Biden has asked the Department of Education to study whether he can unilaterally forgive federally held student loan debt.

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Traditionally all members of Congress and guests gather for a joint session in the House, the larger of the two chambers. However, the address is certain to look different this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Social distancing restrictions have been in place that require House lawmakers to conduct floor votes and other business in smaller groups, rather than convening hundreds in the chamber at once. Masks are required, and the public visitors galleries, usually filled for such an event, have been closed during most of the pandemic.

Details on the Capitol’s preparation for the event were not immediately available.

Presidents don’t deliver a State of the Union address to Congress until their second year in office.


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