NEW YORK – The on-again, off-again Super Bowl interview between President Joe Biden and a Fox Corp. streaming service appears to be off again.
A White House official said Friday evening that it was “inaccurate” to say the interview had been rescheduled, contradicting a Fox Corp. spokesperson who said earlier in the day that it was happening.
The statement appeared to signal the definitive end of a pingpong saga over whether Biden would sit down with Fox interviewers ahead of the Super Bowl on Sunday. Presidents traditionally grant an interview to the network that's broadcasting the football game — in this case, Fox.
However, this year negotiations broke down.
The back-and-forth began Friday with a tweet from White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.
“The President was looking forward to an interview with Fox Soul to discuss the Super Bowl, the State of the Union, and critical issues impacting the everyday lives of Black Americans,” she wrote. “We’ve been informed that Fox Corp. has asked for the interview to be cancelled.”
Fox Soul was created in 2020, and it's geared toward Black viewers.
Hours later, a Fox Corp. spokesperson released a contradictory statement.
“After the White House reached out to Fox Soul Thursday evening, there was some initial confusion," the spokesperson said. "Fox Soul looks forward to interviewing the President for Super Bowl Sunday.”
The spokesperson added that the interviewers — Vivica A. Fox, the actress and host of “Cocktails with Queens,” and sportscaster Mike Hill — had arrived in Washington after flying in from the Los Angeles.
But the White House statement later Friday added another twist.
“As we said earlier, we had arranged an interview with FOX Sports Host Mike Hill & Vivica A. Fox with the President ahead of the Super Bowl and Fox Corp. had the interview cancelled," the statement said. "Fox has since put out a statement indicating the interview was rescheduled, which is inaccurate.”
In 2021, Biden spoke to CBS News anchor Norah O'Donnell prior to the game, and last year he spoke with NBC News' Lester Holt.