President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden appeared on the cover of People magazine for their first interview since moving into the White House on January 20.
Additionally, CBS News announced that Biden would participate in his first television interview, with ‘CBS Evening News’ anchor Norah O’Donnell, which will be aired before Sunday night’s Super Bowl.
First lady Jill Biden (left) and President Joe Biden (right) got the People magazine cover treatment for their first print interview since moving into the White House on January 20
President Biden will participate in the pre-Super Bowl interview tradition, sitting down with CBS News’ Norah O’Donnell (pictured) later this week. It will be his first TV interview since being sworn-in
With that, Biden will be carrying on a tradition started by President George W. Bush, but cemented during President Barack Obama’s eight years in office and for most of President Donald Trump’s era as well – the pre-Super Bowl presidential sit-down.
The Bidens’ interview with People was mainly about how they were settling in and how they support one another.
‘It’s surreal,’ the president said about returning to the White House after spending eight years working on its campus as Obama’s vice president. ‘But it’s comfortable,’ he added.
‘We were here for eight years, just not in this part of the residence. Spent a lot of time in the Cabinet Room and the Oval with the president,’ President Biden explained. ‘So upstairs is new.’
The first lady said that the residence staff has tried to make the White House feel like home.
‘We have family pictures all around, our books, some furniture we brought from home,’ she said.
The Associated Press first reported that furniture included baby Beau’s crib.
The first lady revealed that she’s already started teaching her English writing classes at Northern Virginia Community College, where she also taught as second lady.
‘It’s been busy. But it’s been so many different things, so many different areas, and Joe’s been working hard on foreign policy and of course his new [COVID relief] plan,’ Dr. Bidensaid. ‘And so we have a lot to do – but we have a lot ahead of us and we feel good about it. We feel like people have hope that we’re moving the country forward.’
On Wednesday, Dr. Biden had two scheduled virtual events – a schedule heavier than her predecessor, first lady Melania Trump.
The president also tried to differentiate his administration from Trump’s – where daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner held White House jobs – by saying no family would be officially involved.
While President George W. Bush started the tradition of the pre-Super Bowl sit-down, President Barack Obama (left) did it all eight years. In 2016 he and first lady Michelle Obama (center) sat down with CBS News’ Gayle King (right)
President Donald Trump (left) participated in the interview three of his four years in office, with his final sit-down taking place in 2020 with Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity (right), who asked him out of the gate about his coming Senate impeachment trial
‘We’re going to run this like the Obama-Biden administration,’ Biden said. ‘No one in our family and extended family is going to be involved in any government undertaking or foreign policy. And nobody has an office in this place.’
The comments come after there was some speculation that Biden’s sister Valerie, a longtime political adviser for the now president, could have a West Wing office.
She will not.
People’s reporter had also mentioned Hunter Biden’s problematic business dealings in Ukraine and China when asking President Biden if he was ‘putting up guardrails for family and friends.’
At the conclusion of the excerpts, the president said he hoped that in a year from now the country will have ‘fundamentally returned to normal as it relates to COVID.’
O’Donnell’s television interview with air at 4 p.m. Sunday on CBS before the Super Bowl, with teasers released Friday on ‘CBS Evening News’ and on Sunday morning’s ‘Face the Nation.’
Trump only skipped the pre-Super Bowl interview once – when NBC was carrying the game.
Last year the ex-president sat down with Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity, who asked him right out of the gate about his Senate impeachment trial.
Obama participated in a pre-Super Bowl interview all eight years.
The tradition was started in 2004 by Bush who spoke on-camera from the White House Rose Garden to CBS’ Jim Nantz.
The Super Bowl was taking place in Houston, Texas that year and Bush is the state’s former governor.