Biden to Sit Out Super Bowl Interview

President Biden is sitting out the Super Bowl for the second year in a row.

CBS said on Saturday that the White House had turned down a request for Mr. Biden to participate in a televised interview with its news division, which would have aired in the highly rated hours ahead of the big game on Feb. 11.

In a tradition dating to 2009, presidents have recorded an interview with the network that broadcasts the Super Bowl, although there have been exceptions. Donald J. Trump did not appear on NBC in 2018. Last year, Mr. Biden declined to appear on Fox, home of cable hosts like Sean Hannity who are sharply hostile toward him.

But the White House has been receptive to CBS News in the past. The president was interviewed by the “CBS Evening News” anchor Norah O’Donnell ahead of the 2021 Super Bowl, and he participated in two lengthy “60 Minutes” pieces, in 2022 and 2023, with the correspondent Scott Pelley.

“We hope viewers enjoy watching what they tuned in for — the game,” Ben LaBolt, the White House communications director, said in a statement on Saturday.

The Super Bowl, typically the most-watched telecast of the year, offers an unusually large audience for a sitting president to address current events and advance his agenda to the public.

And there is plenty of news for Mr. Biden to comment on. Starting on Friday, the United States carried out military strikes in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. Three American soldiers were killed last Sunday in Jordan. The government just released a positive jobs report. And Mr. Biden is ramping up his re-election campaign as Mr. Trump has moved closer to clinching the Republican nomination.

In 2021, Mr. Biden’s pregame interview with Ms. O’Donnell was seen live by about 10.2 million viewers; millions more viewed clips that aired on other CBS programs in the days surrounding the game.

For this year’s event, CBS offered the White House about 15 minutes for an interview with Mr. Biden, with three to four minutes airing live during the pregame coverage on the network, according to a person familiar with the discussions.

Mr. Biden has conducted fewer media interviews than his most recent predecessors. The president’s last major network interview took place in October, with Mr. Pelley of CBS. His State of the Union address is scheduled for March 7.

Katie Rogers contributed reporting from Washington.

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