Trump invited to NC to give State of the Union by state’s Speaker

President Donald Trump and Speaker Tim Moore a the White House | Photo: Speaker's Office

RALEIGH — North Carolina House Speaker Tim Moore (R-Kings Mountain) has invited President Donald Trump to the state’s legislature to deliver the State of the Union address.

Moore wrote to the president on Friday, inviting Trump to deliver the address in the House chamber of the North Carolina General Assembly.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) suggested in a letter to the President that the annual address be delayed or given in writing due to the partial government shutdown.

In his letter, Moore says it is “essential” that Americans hear from their president on the effort to reopen the federal government.

Reached by phone on Friday, Moore told the North State Journal that he has not yet received a response from the White House on his invitation. “It disappointed me that Speaker Pelosi would not honor protocol and refuse to invite the President to give the State of the Union Address,” said Moore during a phone interview Friday. “After thinking about it for a couple of days, I wanted to offer to do something as speaker of our state House to show respect for the office of the President.”

The legal basis for the State of the Union Address comes from the U.S. Constitution. Article II, Section 3(1) of the Constitution says the President “shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.” The Constitution does not mandate the location of the speech. Including Trump’s 2018 message, the State of the Union has been directly delivered to Congress 95 times. Woodrow Wilson revived the practice of presenting the message to Congress in person in 1913 when it became a platform for the President to rally support for his agenda.

Below is a full text of the letter:

Dear Mr. President,

It is my sincere pleasure as the Speaker of the North Carolina House of Representatives to invite you to deliver your second State of the Union Address in our chamber of this state’s General Assembly.

I attended your first State of the Union address in Washington D.C. last year.  It was an unforgettable experience to witness this tradition of our commander-in-chief’s speech to a joint session of Congress.

I also believe taking your message outside of the nation’s gilded capital to a state government venue reflects the priorities of your administration, and those of our Congress, to create success not only for federal institutions and programs but for the American people they serve.

North Carolina, like Washington D.C., has a balanced government that provides opportunity for all voices to be heard through dialogue rather than division.  Our rapidly growing state is one of the 10 most populous in the nation and a welcoming place for all, including more than a million active-duty members of the military and brave veterans.

During this critical period for leaders of our country to listen to one another, reach compromises on disagreements, and resolve to work together to reopen our nation’s government, it is essential that citizens of the United States hear directly from their elected President on these efforts.

The majestic character of our state House chamber and the splendor of North Carolina’s breathtaking landscapes are a fitting venue to deliver your second State of the Union address.

The President of the United States is always welcome in the Old North State, where the weak grow strong, and the strong grow great.  In fact, President Bill Clinton addressed a joint session of the North Carolina General Assembly here on March 13, 1997.

I am honored to invite you to speak to the American people in this year’s State of the Union address from the North Carolina House of Representatives.


Speaker Tim Moore