Here’s who’s responding to Biden’s State of the Union address
President Biden will deliver his much-anticipated annual State of the Union address Tuesday evening to a joint session of Congress, set to tout his administration’s successes over the last two years and outline political and legislative goals for 2023 and beyond.
The major party not in control of the White House will typically pick a rising star in its ranks to represent an alternative agenda, and other groups — such as the progressive Working Families Party — will jump in with additional perspectives and priorities.
The rebuttal speakers scheduled so far are all expected to give their addresses after Biden’s speech, which will start around 9 p.m. ET.
Here’s who’s slated to give a response to Biden’s State of the Union address:
Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders (R)
Then-Arkansas Gov.-elect Sarah Huckabee Sanders answers a question while taking part in a panel discussion during a Republican Governors Association conference on Nov. 16, 2022, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File)
Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) selected Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the daughter of former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, to deliver the official Republican response to Biden’s remarks.
A White House press secretary under former President Trump, Sanders is the first woman to hold the Arkansas governor’s mansion and the nation’s youngest governor.
“While President Biden keeps repeating old mistakes and failing Americans, a rising generation of Republican Governors are fighting for families, advancing new solutions, and winning,” McConnell said.
Sanders will give her on-air rebuttal from Little Rock, Ark., and said she plans to “contrast the GOP’s optimistic vision for the future against the failures of President Biden and the Democrats” in her remarks. The speech is set to be televised after Biden’s remarks end.
Rep. Juan Ciscomani (R-Ariz.)
Rep. Juan Ciscomani, R-Ariz., walks past reporters on the opening day of the 118th Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan 3, 2023. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Rep. Juan Ciscomani (R-Ariz.) was picked by McCarthy and McConnell to deliver a Spanish-language Republican rebuttal to Biden.
The first-term lawmaker indicated he’ll bring up the Southern border and the economy in the party’s first Spanish-language counter to Biden’s State of the Union address in the last two years.
When he was elected during the 2022 midterm elections, Ciscomani became the first foreign-born American to represent Arizona in Congress, an accomplishment McCarthy lauded as “nothing short of inspirational.”
“While Democrats’ woke politics would have you believe the worst in our nation, Juan and his family are a shining reminder of what we look like at our best,” the Speaker said.
Ciscomani is also set to give his remarks after Biden’s, sometime during the 10 p.m. ET hour.
Rep. Delia Ramirez (D-Ill.)
Rep.-elect Delia Ramirez (D-Ill.) arrives for the first session of the New Member Orientation in the Capitol Visitors Center Auditorium on Monday, November 14, 2022. (Associated Press via FILE)
The Working Families Party, which regularly puts up progressives to counter the State of the Union address, has picked first-term Illinois Rep. Delia Ramirez (D) to follow Biden on Tuesday.
Her remarks are expected to also rebut Sanders’s and Ciscomani’s speeches for the Republican Party.
“As the daughter of working-class Guatemalan immigrants, the wife of a DACA recipient, and a former director of a homeless shelter, Delia’s lived experiences have shown her how our country can — and must — do better to have working people’s backs,” the party said of Ramirez.
Members of the progressive “squad” of lawmakers on the Hill — a group that includes Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) — gave the progressive response to Biden’s 2021 and 2022 addresses, respectively.
Ramirez’s remarks will be livestreamed by the Working Families Party after Biden’s speech concludes.
Former President Trump
Former President Donald Trump arrives to speak at Mar-a-lago on Election Day, Nov. 8, 2022, in Palm Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)
Former President Trump is expected to respond to Biden’s address, according to a person familiar with Trump’s plans.
The Republican ex-president’s speech will be separate from his party’s official responses.
Biden hasn’t formally announced whether he’ll run for another four years in the White House but has repeated his intent to do so and is likely to use this year’s State of the Union to set the stage for a potential campaign announcement.
Trump, who announced just after the midterms that he’s running to retake the White House in 2024, will likely use the rebuttal to bash the Biden administration and boost his own campaign.
A prerecorded video response is expected to be released after Biden’s remarks.
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