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A White House adviser announced Wednesday that President Barack Obama has requested time to speak to a joint session of Congress on the evening of Sept. 7--at the same time as a scheduled Republican presidential debate in California.
"POTUS has requested a Joint Session of Congress at 8 PM on 9/7 to lay out his plan to create jobs, grow the economy, and reduce the deficit," said presidential adviser Dan Pfeiffer on Twitter.
The Republican debate, co-sponsored by the news website Politico and NBC News, is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. Eastern time on Sept. 7 at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said that the president did not choose the timing of the speech because of the Republican debate.
"No. Of course not. There were a lot of considerations," Carney said when asked if the date was an intentional attempt to upstage the debate. "One debate of many that's on one channel of many was not enough reason not to have the speech at the time that we decided to have it."
He added that the debate organizers were free to change the time if they wanted.
Rachel Rose Hartman contributed to this report.