U.S. President Joe Biden speaks about the 50 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine administered in the U.S. during a landmark event in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, DC on February 25, 2021.

Saul Loeb | AFP | Getty Images

WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden will announce Thursday evening that he will instruct states to qualify all adults for the Covid vaccines by May 1.

Biden is also due to say in his first prime-time address to the nation that Americans should gather in small groups to celebrate July Fourth, a senior government official told reporters Thursday.

“He will be clear that this does not mean big events where many people gather, but it does mean that we can have another Independence Day with small gatherings and celebrations,” the official told reporters before the speech.

“And that is a big step in the right direction,” added the official. “We believe that if we do our part, by Independence Day we will be in a much better place and be able to resume more of our normal activities.”

Biden’s address is scheduled for just after 8 p.m. ET and will be broadcast from the East Room of the White House. The speech is expected to last less than 20 minutes.

The prime-time event comes hours after Biden signed the $ 1.9 trillion Covid Relief Act, which he aggressively pushed onto Congress during his first 50 days in office.

Biden’s remarks come as the United States administered a record number of vaccines over the weekend. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention administered 2.9 million vaccines on Saturday, a record and 2.4 million on Sunday. This emerges from the agency’s latest assessment. The numbers are subject to change as more data become available to health authorities.

Biden will be on a nationwide tour next week to announce his government’s first major legislative move. The president will depart Tuesday for Delaware County, Pennsylvania, an electoral state that was key to Biden’s victory over former President Donald Trump.

Earlier Thursday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden would “provide some more details” on how the government would fight the virus in the future.

CNBC’s Kevin Breuninger reported from New York City.

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