The Biden administration has played Fox News all week over whether Joe Biden will do a traditional Super Bowl interview with the network this Sunday. The White House went around Fox News on Thursday and arranged a softball interview with the two personalities with Fox Soul, a little-known digital broadcast and streaming service. The deal was initially shot down by Fox Corp., prompting a statement from the White House on Friday. A few hours later, Fox Corporation announced that Fox Soul would interview Biden and two Fox Soul personalities, Vivica A. Fox and Michael Hill, flew to Washington to conduct the interview.
“The president looked forward to an interview with Fox Soul to discuss the Super Bowl, the State of the Union and the complex issues affecting the daily lives of black Americans. We have been informed that Fox Corp. has asked to cancel the interview.”
The president was looking forward to an interview with Fox Soul to discuss the Super Bowl, the State of the Union and the complex issues affecting the daily lives of black Americans. We have been informed that Fox Corp has asked to cancel the interview.
— Karin Jean-Pierre (@presssec) February 10, 2023
Fox Corporation then issued a statement saying, “After reaching out to White House Fox Soul on Thursday evening, there was some initial confusion. Fox Soul looks forward to interviewing the President for Super Bowl Sunday.”
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On Friday night, the White House issued a statement saying the interview is still off (via Variety):
“As we’ve said before, we arranged an interview with the president before the Super Bowl with Fox Sports hosts Mike Hill and Vivica A. Fox, and Fox Corp. canceled the interview. A White House spokesman said FOX has since issued a statement indicating the interview had been rescheduled, which is incorrect.
…but Fox’s real intention was to have Biden interviewed by Fox News. The idea doesn’t seem to go over well with the White House. Earlier on Friday, a Fox News executive told Variety that “we did interviews with our top news anchors with no strings attached. They’re walking away from a huge audience and it’s a big missed opportunity.” Within minutes, the White House press secretary tweeted that Fox Corp. had canceled a deal for an interview with Fox Soul.
Fox Corporation later tried to adopt the new concept. “After the White House reached out to Fox Soule on Thursday evening, there was some initial confusion. Fox Soul looks forward to interviewing the president for Super Bowl Sunday,” Fox Corp. said in a statement. The Fox broadcast network is expected to televise Super Bowl LVII on Sunday, February 13.
Earlier this week, Fox News anchor Brett Baer reported on the failure to reach an agreement with Biden for the interview:
See: Fox’s @Brettbyer: “Every year, the network that traditionally broadcasts the Superbowl gets an interview @POTUS. We have officially asked for that interview but we have not yet received an answer as to whether they are going to do it or not. Our days are running out.” #SuperBowl pic.twitter.com/ptEgkA5IA6
— TV News Now (@TVNewsNow) February 8, 2023