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Obama in prime time, a list

PBS NewsHour will live stream President Barack Obama’s prime-time address to the nation scheduled for 9 p.m. EDT tonight. Following the address, NewsHour political analysts Mark Shields and David Brooks will discuss the president’s remarks.

Tonight, President Barack Obama will address the nation in a prime-time speech on the U.S.’s strategy for combating the Islamic State militant group. His address, on the eve of the anniversary of 9/11 attacks, will outline the President’s goal in “degrading and ultimately destroying” the terrorist group.

The president will be stealing the costly prime-time slot from the television networks. But his address comes at a time when the American public is increasingly aware and concerned about the growing threat of the Islamic State militants, especially in the wake of the beheadings of American journalists, James Foley and Steven Sotloff.

Addressing the nation in prime time is not new, but it is relatively rare. Back in April, Mr. Obama tried to give a prime-time speech on the Affordable Care Act but the network executives refused the request. It was probably for good reason — according to a 2009 Adweek article, breaking into the prime-time slot for the big four broadcast networks (FOX, CBS, ABC, NBC) in one night costs them nearly $30 million in revenue.

Here is a list of some of the major prime-time speeches — not counting State of the Union addresses — President Obama has delivered:

Aug. 7, 2014 9:30 p.m. EDT — Authorizing airstrikes in Iraq

Oct. 16, 2013 8:30 p.m. EST — Announcing the end to the government shutdown

Sept. 10, 2013 9:01 p.m. EDT — Making the case to launch a limited military strike against Syria

April 19, 2013 10:05 p.m. EDT — Calming the nation after the Boston Marathon bombing

May 1, 2012 7:39 p.m. EDT — Announcing the plans for the end of the Afghanistan war

May 2, 2011 11:35 p.m. EDT — Announcing the death of Osama Bin Laden

April 8, 2011 11:04 p.m. EDT — Announcing a last-minute deal to avoid a government shutdown

Jan. 28, 2011 6:33 p.m. EST — Addressing the situation in Egypt

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