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Obama's State of the Union address: Greeted by a familiar face

January 27, 2010 |  6:10 pm

President Obama entered the House tonight to applause to give his first official State of the Union speech, and was greeted by Rep. Eliot L. Engel.


Engel, a Democrat representing parts of the Bronx and Westchester and Rockland counties in New York, has made it his business for years to grab an aisle seat and greet presidents as they enter the chamber. Tonight was his third time with Obama.

The presidential procession is always an explosion of cheers and handshakes, sort of the Washington version of back-to-school day.

Vice President Joe Biden, who made the same walk hours earlier, got more back slaps than the president, but Biden had decades on Capitol Hill and now serves as president of the Senate.

While the entrance is always joyous, the reaction to the speech itself will probably be a bit more restrained in some quarters.

-- Michael Muskal

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Photo: Screen capture of White House live stream