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State of the Union Responses

With Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels scheduled to give the Republican response to President Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday, he'll join a long list of other politicians who have given responses to presidents' addresses during the past 46 years. Below are those governors, members, and others who gave the official responses to State of the Union addresses, based on information from the House of Representatives' Office of the Clerk:



Lyndon Johnson


Sen. Everett Dirksen, R-Ill., and Rep. Gerald Ford, R-Mich.
This was the first organized televised State of the Union response.



Dirksen and Ford


  • Rep. William Steiger, R-Wis.
  • Sen. Thomas Kuchel, R-Calif.
  • Rep. Ford
  • Sen. Charles Percy, R-Ill.
  • Rep. Richard Poff, R-Va.
  • Rep. George Bush, R-Texas
  • Rep. Robert Mathias, R-Calif.
  • Sen. Howard Baker, R-Tenn.
  • Sen. Hugh Scott, R-Pa.
  • Sen. John Tower, R-Texas
  • Rep. Charlotte Reid, R-Ill.
  • Sen. Peter Dominick, R-Colo.
  • Rep. Albert Quie, R-Minn.
  • Rep. Melvin Laird, R-Wis.
  • Sen. Robert P. Griffin, R-Mich.
  • Sen. George Murphy, R-Calif.



No response to President Johnson’s speech, which was delivered six days before President Nixon's inauguration.


Richard Nixon


  • Sen. William Proxmire, D-Wis.
  • Rep. Donald Fraser, D-Minn.
  • Senator Mike Mansfield, D-Mont.
  • Sen. Henry “Scoop” Jackson, D-Wash.
  • Sen. Edmund Muskie, D-Maine
  • Rep. Patsy Mink, D-Hawaii
  • Rep. John McCormack, D-Mass.


Sen. Mansfield


  • Sen. Proxmire
  • Sen. Frank Church, D-Idaho
  • Sen. Thomas Eagleton, D-Mo.
  • Sen. Lloyd Bentsen, D-Texas
  • Rep. Leonor Sullivan, D-Mo.
  • Rep. John Melcher, D-Mont.
  • Rep. John Brademas, D-Ind.
  • Rep. Martha Griffiths, D-Mich.
  • Rep. Ralph Metcalfe, D-Ill.
  • Rep. Carl Albert, D-Okla.
  • Rep. Hale Boggs, D-La.



No response. Inauguration of President Nixon.


Sen. Mansfield


Gerald Ford


Sen. Hubert Humphrey, D-Minn., and Rep. Carl Albert, D-Okla.


Sen. Muskie


No response to President Ford’s final annual message.


Jimmy Carter


Sen. Baker and Rep. John Rhodes, R-Ariz.


Sen. Baker and Rep. Rhodes


Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, and Rep. Rhodes


Ronald Reagan


No response. Inauguration of President Reagan on Jan. 20.


  • Sen. Donald Riegle, D-Mich.
  • Sen. James Sasser, D-Tenn.
  • Rep. Al Gore, D-Tenn.
  • Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va.
  • Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass.
  • House Speaker Thomas P. O’Neill, D-Mass.
  • Sen. Gary Hart, D-Colo.
  • Sen. Paul Sarbanes, D-Md.
  • Sen. J. Bennett Johnston, D-La.
  • Sen. Alan Cranston, D-Calif.


In a prerecorded televised program:

  • Sen. Byrd
  • Sen. Paul Tsongas, D-Mass.
  • Sen. Bill Bradley, D-N.J.
  • Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del.
  • Rep. Tom Daschle, D-S.D.
  • Rep. Barbara Kennelly, D-Conn.
  • House Speaker O’Neill
  • Rep. George Miller, D-Calif.
  • Rep. Les AuCoin, D-Ore.
  • Rep. Paul Simon, D-Ill.
  • Rep. Timothy Wirth, D-Colo.
  • Rep. W.G. “Bill” Hefner, D-N.C.


  • Sen. Biden
  • Sen. David Boren, D-Okla.
  • Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich.
  • Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont.
  • Sen. Byrd
  • Sen. Clairborne Pell, D-R.I.
  • Sen. Walter Huddleston, D-Ky.
  • Rep. Dante B. Fascell, D-Fla.
  • Rep. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa
  • Rep. William Gray, D-Pa.
  • House Speaker O’Neill
  • Rep. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif.
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