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State Of The Union Address 2016: Start Time, TV Channel & Live Stream

State of the Union, Barack Obama Union Address


Tonight is Barack Obama‘s first State of the Union of 2016, and also his final address before he leaves office January 20, 2017. It also comes two days before the FOX Business Republican Debate, so be prepared to never hear the end of whatever he says tonight.

Which brings us to this question: what will President Obama be addressing tonight? The White House released a statement to shed some light on what to expect:

When President Obama took office seven years ago, we were involved in two wars, losing over 800,000 jobs a month, and weathering the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. But, with his leadership and the determination of the American people, we have made extraordinary progress on the path to a stronger country and a brighter future. We’ve proven that, together, we can overcome great challenges. In his last State of the Union, President Obama will lay out the ways that we, as the American people, can once again come together in pursuit of a country worthy of generations to come.

So, how should you tune in? For those of you who don’t have cable, multiple live streams will be available to you.


A free live stream (read: FREE, our favorite word) of the address will be available on the White House Website. The address will begin at 9:00 p.m. ET.

A live stream will also be available on Amazon Instant Video (both live and on-demand). This is also free, which is awesome. If neither of those options suit your fancy, we still have a few others. Hooray!

The White House YouTube Channel will show the State of the Union Address live or – if you have a cable provider – you can watch on FOX Business live online, where you’ll have full access to the official live stream. You must have cable or have someone else’s cable information to log in. Choose your TV provider (Verizon FIOS, Optimum, etc.) and then sign in with your username and password. If you do not have a log in, you can register for free by following the prompts.

Everything else you need to know – including the start time, TV channel, and a full list of speakers – is listed below:


January 12, 2016


9:00 p.m. ET – 11:00 p.m. ET


FOX BUSINESS – Click here to find the exact channel to watch, using the FOX BUSINESS channel finder.


South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley


Paul Ryan

FIRST LADY’S GUESTS: (Note: One chair “will be left empty for the victims of gun violence who no longer have a voice.”), Syrian refugee Refaai Hamo, Edith Childs, Sue Ellen Allen, Oscar Vazquez, Gloria Balenski, Jennifer Bragdon, Lisa Jaster, Kathleen O’Toole, Mark Luttrell, Satya Nadella, Dannel Malloy, Braeden Mannering, Cynthia K. Dias, Mark Davis, Cary Dixon, Naveed Shah, Earl Smith, Spencer Stone, Jim Obergefell, Ronna Rice, Cedric Rowland, Ryan Reyes, and Lydia Doza. For full details on Michelle Obama’s guest list and each individual, read more via USA Today.

State of the Union Facts You Need to Know

  • The U.S. Constitution requires the president to deliver a State of the Union address to Congress. By tradition, the Commander in Chief gives a message annually.
  • Franklin Delano Roosevelt popularized the “State of the Union” phrase. Before he took office, presidents before him just called it “Annual Message.”
  • Initially the State of the Union was delivered to Congress in writing rather than in a speech. This went on for about a centuryuntil Woodrow Wilson gave a speech in 1913.
  • The State of the Union is not more commonly spoken in layman’s terms, as opposed to its original prose, which was addressed lawmakers.
  • William Henry Harrison and James Garfield both died before getting the chance to deliver a State of the Union address. They were the only two presidents who never gave one.

COED Writer
Writer and editor living in New York City who also loves Taking Back Sunday, bad reality TV, and Leonardo DiCaprio (not necessarily in that order).