Rice U. expert: High stakes for State of the Union

Rice University
Office of Public Affairs / News & Media Relations

Editor’s note: To schedule an interview with Paul Brace, contact him directly at 832-628-5285.


David Ruth

Amy McCaig

Rice U. expert: High stakes for State of the Union

HOUSTON – (Jan. 31, 2019) –As President Donald Trump prepares to deliver the State of the Union address, Rice University political scientist Paul Brace is available to comment on what’s at stake in the Feb. 5 event.

Paul Brace. Photo by Jeff Fitlow.

Paul Brace. Photo by Jeff Fitlow.

The address originally scheduled for Jan. 29 was delayed when U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi postponed it because of the government shutdown.

While the annual televised speech before Congress is always a major event, for this president, in these times, the stakes are particularly high, Brace said.

“The government shutdown over the construction of a wall at our southern border has only been temporarily suspended until Feb. 15,” Brace said. “As each side of this conflict has shown little signs of compromise, the president’s speech may signal paths to resolving this impasse, or indications that the government will shut down again in the next few weeks. We may expect the president to comment on the nation’s economy which, while remaining quite strong, has stumbled in the latter half of 2018. In addition, the president is likely to comment on the nation’s security, but this too is an area of controversy as recent intelligence reports have contradicted the president’s assessments of various threats and U.S. military operations around the world.”

The Democratic response to the address will be delivered by Stacey Abrams, a former Georgia state representative who was recently defeated in a gubernatorial election, an outcome many disputed as a result of unfair practices by the eventual winner, Brace said.

“As an African-American woman, Ms. Abrams will offer a distinct contrast to the president, one targeted toward the increasingly diverse American electorate going into the 2020 election season,” Brace said.

Brace is widely published, primarily in the areas of U.S. politics and judicial decision-making. He comments regularly on presidential politics, the judiciary and the U.S. government. For more information on Brace, visit http://www.ruf.rice.edu/~pbrace/. To schedule an interview, contact him directly at 832-628-5285.

Rice University has a VideoLink ReadyCam TV interview studio. ReadyCam is capable of transmitting broadcast-quality standard-definition and high-definition video directly to all news media organizations around the world 24/7. 


This news release can be found online at http://news.rice.edu.

Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.

Related materials:

Paul Brace bio: https://politicalscience.rice.edu/paul-brace

Paul Brace headshot: https://cpb-us-e1.wpmucdn.com/news-network.rice.edu/dist/c/2/files/2016/01/Paul-Brace-1i4pyra.jpg

Photo credit: Rice University

Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,962 undergraduates and 3,027 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is just under 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is ranked No. 1 for lots of race/class interaction and No. 2 for quality of life by the Princeton Review. Rice is also rated as a best value among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to http://tinyurl.com/RiceUniversityoverview.

About Amy McCaig

Amy is a senior media relations specialist in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.