Tonight, President Joe Biden is delivering his 2023 State of the Union speech. The SOTU address begins at 9 p.m. Eastern on Tuesday, February 7. But how long will the speech last? What time is it expected to end?
Biden’s State of the Union Will Likely Last Between 60 to 90 Minutes
Although it’s not known the exact time that Biden’s address will end, most State of the Union speeches tend to last between one hour to 90 minutes. Because Biden’s SOTU speech begins at 9 p.m. Eastern, you can expect his speech to conclude between 10 and 10:30 p.m. Eastern. (In other time zones, this would be between 9 and 9:30 p.m. Central, between 8 and 8:30 p.m. Mountain time, or between 7 and 7:30 p.m. Pacific.)
Biden’s two previous speeches to a joint session of Congress can also give viewers an idea of when to expect tonight’s speech to end. In 2022, his speech was 61 minutes and 50 seconds long, KVUE reported. In 2021, his speech to a joint session of Congress started at 9:06 p.m. Eastern and ended at 10:12 p.m. Eastern, lasting approximately 66 minutes in length.
Biden’s last two speeches were longer than an hour, but less than 70 minutes long. So this year’s could likely be about the same length. If he starts his speech a few minutes after 9 p.m. Eastern, it might be ending right around 10:10 to 10:15 p.m. Eastern.
TV stations covering the speech live have allotted more time in their schedules in case the speech goes longer. According to TV Guide, CBS, ABC, and NBC all have set aside two hours to cover the State of the Union, with local programming starting immediately after. Local programs can be delayed if needed.
You can watch Biden’s speech live in the embedded video above. This is a live stream provided by CNBC.
Biden’s speeches have historically been shorter than former President Donald Trump’s. Trump’s 2020 speech was 78 minutes long and his 2019 speech was 82 minutes long. His 2018 speech was 80 minutes. Only his 2017 speech was shorter, clocking in at 60 minutes.
According to The American Presidency Project, former President Bill Clinton had the longest speeches, with a 2000 speech lasting 88 minutes and a 1995 speech lasting 84 minutes.
The Republicans Will Give a Response After Biden’s Speech
After Biden’s speech concludes tonight, the Republicans will give their response in a speech delivered by Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, CBS News reported. Although there’s not a specific time that her speech will begin, it will start shortly after Biden’s speech finishes.
A Sanders representative told CBS News that she will address the need for a new generation to rise up and lead America.
The Republican response in Spanish will be delivered by Rep. Juan Ciscomani of Arizona, CBS News reported.
Biden’s speech tonight is expected to look back at his progress and successes, but also address the work that still needs to be done for the economy, CNBC reported. He’s also expected to discuss the debt ceiling and police reform, The Hill reported.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has said that Republicans will be following their code of ethics during Biden’s speech, Insider reported, and they won’t be doing “childish games tearing up a speech.”
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