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Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels tapped for GOP's State of the Union response

January 19, 2012|By Michael A. Memoli
  • Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels greets House Minority Leader B. Patrick Bauer before he delivers the State of the State address Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2012, in Indianapolis.
Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels greets House Minority Leader B. Patrick Bauer… (Darron Cummings / Associated…)

Reporting from Washington — Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels will deliver the Republican response to President Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday, congressional Republicans have announced.

Daniels is beginning the final year of his two-term governorship of a state Obama narrowly carried in the 2008 campaign. A former budget director to President George W. Bush, he has been a critic of Obama's fiscal stewardship of the nation.

"Mitch Daniels is a fierce advocate for smaller, less costly and more accountable government, and has the record to prove it," House Speaker John Boehner said in a statement. "As governor, he has turned deficits into surplus, reformed government from top to bottom, and created a better environment for private-sector job creation.  For making tough choices and keeping his promises, Mitch Daniels is the right choice at the right time to deliver the Republican response to President Obama's address."

"It's an honor to be asked. I hope to do the assignment justice," said Daniels, who opted against running for president last spring.

Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, chair of the House Budget Committee, delivered the Republican response to Obama's 2011 State of the Union.

Tuesday's speech will be Obama's third State of the Union address, and his sixth to a joint session of Congress.

The White House announced Wednesday that the president will follow up his address with a three-day, five-state tour.

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