State of the Union address: How to stream online or watch on TV

By Grace Segers

/ CBS News

Trump preps for State of the Union tomorrow

President Trump is delivering the State of the Union address Tuesday, February 5, a week after the speech was initially scheduled on January 29. Mr. Trump agreed to postpone the speech at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's request, until after the partial government shutdown was over. The 35-day shutdown ended on Jan. 25.

How to watch the State of the Union:

The annual State of the Union address by the president is considered a Washington institution. The president has appeared before a joint session of Congress every year since 1913, providing a constitutionally-mandated debrief on the country's current political and economic status. Article II of the Constitution requires the president to "give to Congress information of the State of the Union and recommend to their Consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient."

Has the State of the Union been postponed before?

Mr. Trump's address will be only the second State of the Union speech to be postponed. President Ronald Reagan postponed the speech in 1986 by a week after the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster.

What is the State of the Union?

Article II of the Constitution requires the president to "give to Congress information of the State of the Union and recommend to their Consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient." The language of the State of the Union clause is unspecific, saying only that the president must give the address "from time to time," but historically, presidents have delivered the speech at the beginning of the year.

Although Presidents George Washington and John Adams delivered their addresses to Congress in person, President Thomas Jefferson chose to write the address in a letter to Congress. He suggested he was doing Congress a favor by sending it to them in writing, showing "principal regard" because it was more convenient for lawmakers, saved time, and spared them "the embarrassment of immediate answers on subjects not fully before them."

Who is giving the State of the Union Rebuttal for the Democrats?

Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams will be giving the Democratic rebuttal to Mr. Trump's address. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra will give the Democratic response in Spanish.

Stacey Abrams wields political power, despite not being a lawmaker

More 2019 State of the Union coverage:

First published on February 4, 2019

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Grace Segers

Grace Segers is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.

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