WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will visit Wisconsin next week for his first official trip as president, participating in a TV town hall from Milwaukee.
Biden will take questions at a socially-distanced, invitation-only event hosted by CNN Tuesday night, according to the network.
While the Biden administration did not share further details of the trip, the president has been focused heavily on addressing the coronavirus pandemic and passing his COVID-19 relief bill since he was sworn in last month.
Since entering office, Biden has opted for virtual events and television interviews to sell his plan, and initially his aides expressed caution about traveling beyond Washington due to the pandemic. But Biden returned home to Delaware last weekend, and White House press secretary Jen Psaki noted that the president flies on a private plane — Air Force One — which helps reduce the risk of spreading the virus. Biden has also received both doses of his vaccine, and consistently wears a mask.
Biden made Wisconsin a focus for his campaign in 2020, visiting the state three times, including in late October, when he visited Milwaukee just days before the election. Biden ultimately flipped the state back from red to blue, beating former President Donald Trump by about 20,000 votes there.
The day Biden is visiting Wisconsin, Feb. 16, is also the state’s spring primary election day, with just one statewide primary — for a nonpartisan superintendent of schools position — on the ballot, along with more than 100 local primaries.
Biden’s CNN town hall will also overlap with a video message Democratic Gov. Tony Evers is slated to give at the same time that night delivering his two-year state budget to the GOP-controlled legislature.
AP writer Scott Bauer in Madison, Wis. contributed to this report.