Updated 1:05 AM EST, Wed March 2, 2022
President Joe Biden delivered his first State of the Union address on Tuesday night, and he used his biggest platform of the year to blast Russian President Vladimir Putin for invading Ukraine.
"Putin's latest attack on Ukraine was premeditated and unprovoked," Biden said. "He rejected repeated, repeated, efforts at diplomacy. He thought the West and NATO wouldn't respond. He thought he could divide us at home, in this chamber and in this nation. Putin was wrong. We were ready."
Biden's speech also acknowledged the economic challenges Americans have continued to face as a result of rising inflation, global supply-chain issues and higher prices at the gas pump. The President laid out a four-point plan to lower costs for American families and continue the country's economic recovery amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
Biden also addressed the evolution of the pandemic and America's response to it. His comments came ahead of the release of a new Covid strategy document.
This was Biden's first State of the Union, but his second speech to a joint session of Congress. In April last year, he spoke in front of a House chamber that featured a masked audience and many empty seats. Because of Covid-19 restrictions, only a limited number of lawmakers were in the chamber.