2010 State of the Union SIADD

President John McCain delivering the State of the Union to the United States Congress with Vice President Tim Pawlenty and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The 2010 State of the Union Address was given by United States President John McCain on January 27, 2010, to a joint session of Congress. It was aired on all the major networks starting at 9 PM ET. It was McCain's first State of the Union Address, though the president did give a non-State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress a month after taking office in 2009.

The speech was delivered on the floor of the United States House of Representatives in the United States Capitol. As always, the presiding officers of the Senate and the House of Representatives, Vice President Tim Pawlenty (as Senate President) and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi sat behind the president.

Among the topics that McCain covered in his speech were proposals for job creation, federal deficit reduction, change of structure of government in Washington, D.C. and foreign policy.

Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado delivered the Democratic response following the speech.


The following items were mentioned by the President as potential policy changes, legislative initiatives, or goals coming out of the address:

  • Economy: Keeping the economy healthy
    • Defending the necessity of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
  • Budget: Comprehensive Deficit Reduction Plan
    • Reduce annual deficit by at least $ 200 billion
    • A balanced federal budget with surplus by 2016
    • Starting in 2011, freeze government spending for 3 years on discretionary programs (excluding national security, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security)
    • Eliminate programs that are unaffordable or don't work
    • Extend middle-class tax cuts
    • Eliminate pork-barrel spending
    • Reform for earmarks
    • Bipartisan fiscal commission to provide solutions (created by Executive Order, if necessary)
    • Restoring pay-as-you-go law
  • Healthcare:
    • Empowering Americans with affordable options for health care
    • Guaranteed Access Plan
    • Comprehensive Bipartisan Heath Care Reform
  • Labor: Job creation
    • Building clean energy facilities
    • Giving rebates to Americans who make their homes more energy-efficient
    • Slash tax breaks for companies that send jobs overseas (giving those breaks to companies that create jobs in the U.S.)
  • Energy: Comprehensive National Energy Plan
    • Encourage American innovation through focus on clean energy
    • Building nuclear power plants
    • Reduction of dependence on foreign oil
    • Exploring off-shore areas for oil and gas
    • Investment in advance bio-fuels and clean coal technologies
    • Comprehensive energy and climate bill to make clean energy profitable
    • Trade agreements with Norway on clean oil and petroleum production
    • Trade agreements with Denmark on wind energy
  • Foreign trade:
    • More exports of goods
  • Foreign policy:
    • War in Afghanistan - U.S. troop surge
    • War in Iraq - Withdrawal of U.S. combat forces by 2013
    • Yemen
  • National Security: The Global War on Terror
    • Improving security at airports
    • Improve internal communication between government agencies
  • Veterans: Supporting the nation's troops and their families
  • Structure of government:
    • Limits on contributions that lobbyists give to candidates
    • Campaign finance regulation
    • Criticism of the political tone between Democrats and Republicans
    • Government transparency
    • President's question time
  • Immigration reform:
    • Bipartisan commission on immigration reform

Justice Alito's response

During the address, McCain condemned the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling, stating, "Last week, the Supreme Court reversed a century of law to open the floodgates for unions and corporations to to spend money without limit on federal election campaigns. This decision was a terrible mistake. Over time, their decision will open the door to further political bribery and corruption here in Washington." Justice Samuel Alito was seen frowning and saying "not true" when McCain criticized the Supreme Court.

Technical information

Housing Secretary Steven Preston was chosen as the designated survivor and did not attend the address, in order to keep a presidential line of succession should a catastrophic event have wiped out the administration.

See also

Preceded by:
Joint session of Congress, 2009
State of the Union Addresses
Succeeded by:
2011 State of the Union Address