U.S. President Joe Biden to Host Obamas in September for Portrait Unveiling

United States President Joe Biden will host former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama at the White House in early September for the unveiling of their White House portraits.

“On September 7, the President and Dr. Biden will host President and Mrs. Obama for the unveiling ceremony for their official White House portraits and that will be very exciting,” White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre confirmed at a press briefing on July 28.

The ceremony, typically held in the East Room of the White House, is a decades-long tradition in which first-term presidents host their immediate predecessors to unveil their official portraits.

Former President Donald Trump broke the 40-year tradition during his term, shunning the Obamas’ unveiling ceremony that was scheduled in 2020 due to their estranged relationship. Obama at the time also said he was not interested in participating in the ceremony while Trump was in office.

The COVID-19 pandemic further delayed the Obamas’ portrait ceremony after Biden took office last year.

The event will mark Michelle Obama’s first time returning to the White House since January 2017.

The artists who painted the first couple will be revealed during the event as per tradition.

The official White House portraits of presidents and first ladies are separate from those displayed in the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C.

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