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State of the State address

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The State of the State Address is a speech customarily given annually by state governors in the United States,[1] although the terminology for this speech differs for some states: in Iowa, it's called the Condition of the State Address; in Kentucky, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Virginia it is called the State of the Commonwealth Address. The speech is customarily delivered before both houses of the state legislature sitting in joint session, with the exception of the Nebraska Legislature, which is a unicameral body. The speech is given to satisfy a constitutional stipulation that a governor must report annually, or in older constitutions described as being "from time to time", on the state or condition of a state.

The potentially unclear name reflects the dual meanings of the word "state"; the first refers to the general condition of a thing, and the second refers to the political conception of a state.

The mayor of the District of Columbia gives a State of the District address. There are also many cities in the United States in which the mayor gives a State of the City address. Some American counties have county executives give a State of the County or Parish address, though these are much more rare.

The analogous address given by the president of the United States is known as the State of the Union address.


  1. ^ "Latest News".
  • Nuquist, Andrew E. and Edith W. Nuquist. Vermont State Government and Administration. Government Research Center, The University of Vermont: 1966. Library of Congress Card Number 65-29199.
  • Tarr, G. Alan. Understanding State Constitutions. Princeton University Press: 2000. ISBN 978-0-691-07066-7.
  • Wolin, Sheldon. The Presence of the Past: Essays on the State and the Constitution. The Johns Hopkins University Press: 1990. ISBN 978-0-8018-4116-3.

External links[edit]

  • A Decade of State of the State Speeches – a year-by-year analysis of Stateline's archive of State of the State speeches from all 50 states and links to speeches, from 2002 to 2011, organized by state.