Mayor Parker to attend State of the Union as guest of U.S. Rep. Dwight Evans

President Biden will deliver his third State of the Union address beginning at 9 p.m. Thursday. Follow WHYY on air and online for live special coverage.

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker (right) with her family at her historic inauguration on Jan. 2, 2024.

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker (right) with her family at her historic inauguration on Jan. 2, 2024. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

What you need to know

  • President Joe Biden will deliver his third State of the Union address starting at 9 p.m. Thursday
  • From abortion and infrastructure to tax fairness, here’s what to expect from Biden’s speech
  • Sen. Katie Britt (R-AL) will deliver the opposing party’s response, and Trump has promised to provide “LIVE, Play by Play” commentary on Biden’s speech
  • Watch or listen to the address on, the WHYY App, WHYY-FM 90.9 or WHYY-TV

When President Joe Biden delivers his State of the Union address on Thursday, among the audience members will be Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker. Parker is joining the president’s annual address to Congress as a guest of U.S. Rep. Dwight Evans.

In a statement, Evans called Parker his “friend of many years” and said he was happy for the opportunity to “spotlight the fresh start and positive change she is bringing to Philly.”

“I look forward to hearing from President Biden on how he plans to build on successes in areas such as public safety, health care, housing, and transit and other infrastructure,” he added. “With the leadership of our new mayor, I believe Philadelphia is well-positioned to benefit from federal initiatives.”

Evans and Parker previously served together in the Pennsylvania state House, representing their respective portions of Northwest Philadelphia.

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Parker called Evans a “friend and ally” and said she appreciated the chance to hear “President Biden make his case to the American people for all the vitally important work the Biden-Harris administration has done for our country and people.”

“Our President is a strong friend of Philadelphia and Pennsylvania on a wide array of issues, from infrastructure funding for new SEPTA railcars to improvements at the Airport to critical investments in our water and sewer system – all this year,” she said. “I can’t wait to hear his speech.”

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While serving as state representative, Evans chaired the powerful House Appropriations Committee for 20 years. He was first elected to Congress in November 2016 and represents Northwest and West Philadelphia and parts of North, South, Southwest and Center City Philadelphia.

Philadelphia’s 100th mayor and the first woman to lead the city, Parker took office this year after six years on City Council and 10 years as a state representative.

Philadelphia Councilmember at-Large Nicolas O’Rourke, a pastor and community organizer, will deliver the progressive response to Biden’s address. O’Rourke plans to address economic inequality and the president’s response to Israel’s war in Gaza, among other things.

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