Ryan Invites Trump to Address Joint Session of Congress Next Month

House speaker describes new president's agenda as 'ambitious'

Speaker of the House Rep. Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell watch President Donald Trump deliver his inaugural address on Friday. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Speaker Paul D. Ryan has invited President Donald Trump to address a joint session of Congress late next month, giving the 45th chief executive another opportunity to deliver his vision for governing the country.

Ryan used Trump’s preferred communication tool, Twitter, to announce he has invited Trump to address lawmakers on Feb. 28.

New presidents typically address a joint session in their first weeks on the job, though the appearances are not technically considered a State of the Union address. For instance, former President Barack Obama spoke from the well of the House chamber on Feb. 24, 2009, just over a month after he was in sworn in to his first term.

“In the days and weeks, we look forward to laying out more of our agenda. To that end, today I am inviting President Trump to address a joint session of Congress on February the 28th,” Ryan told reporters. “This will be an opportunity for the people and their representatives to hear directly from our new president about his vision and our shared agenda.”

The speaker called Trump's agenda as “ambitious,” adding: “For too long, Washington has been too timid about addressing the challenges facing our country. We want this to be a bold government.”

Trump will head up Pennsylvania Avenue just a month after delivering a memorable inaugural address in which he spoke of “American carnage” and “tombstones” of abandoned factories dotting the country’s landscape.

And he told the world he wanted everyone to know his governing principle will be “America first.”

The first time Trump addressed the country from the Capitol, he said his ascension to power marks the “transferring [of] power from Washington, D.C., and giving it back to you, the people.”

“For too long, a small group in our nation’s capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the costs,” the president said. “Washington has flourished but people did not share in its wealth.”sotu-days-graphic

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.