What time is the State of the Union and other fun SOTU facts (+ an infographic!)


As we gear up for the president's first State of the Union of his second term, here are the basics for what to expect tonight.


WHERE: The House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.

WHY: Constitutionally required

WHO: The President, Congress, (some of the) Supreme Court Justices, Joint Chiefs of Staff, and personal guests. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) will deliver the official GOP response and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) will deliver the Tea Party response.

While you wait for tonight's theatrics, check out this awesome infographic giving you a look at the difference 100 years make in State of the Union delivery.

Still hungry for more facts about the State of the Union? Me too. Here is some more information to prepare for your inevitable Jeopardy appearance. 

The longest State of the Union was Jimmy Carter's 1981 address which registered at 33,667 words. However, Carter never delivered that State of the Union - it was submitted in written form. For reference, Clinton's "endless" State of the Union was 9,190 words at the longest (also the longest ever spoken clocking in at 1.5 hours), less than a third of Carter's opus.

The shortest State of the Union was the first one ever delivered by George Washington. The entire speech was roughly 1,000 words. Read it here.

The first radio broadcast of the State of the Union was given by Calvin Coolidge in 1923. Harry Truman was the first to televise the State of the Union, in 1947 and George W. Bush was the first to webcast his State of the Union in 2002.

Thomas Jefferson was the first to submit his State of the Union in written form. Prior to Jefferson, both Washington and Adams had only delivered the speech.

The only time the State of the Union was ever delayed was on January 28, 1986. President Reagan was scheduled to deliver his State of the Union that evening but was forced to re-schedule when the Space Shuttle Challenger broke apart 73 seconds after launch. He delivered the speech on February 4.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt delivered more State of the Unions speeches than any other President, totalling 12 messages over the course of his four terms.

The longest applause interruption at a State of the Union occured in 2006, lasting 52 seconds. It was in honor of Staff Sgt. Daniel Clay, who lost his life in Iraq.