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NC Gov. Cooper to give State of the State speech Monday night

NC Governor Roy Cooper
Matt Ramey
Gov. Roy Cooper will give a State of the Union-style speech Monday night at the legislature.

Gov. Roy Cooper will outline his policy goals to lawmakers and a statewide audience Monday night in his annual State of the State speech.

It’s the North Carolina version of the president’s State of the Union address. Cooper will be speaking to a joint session of the state House and Senate. Republicans have nearly veto-proof majorities there as Cooper wraps up the final two years of his term.

The speech comes as lawmakers are poised to approve Cooper’s biggest request: Medicaid expansion. It's something the governor has lobbied for since taking office in 2017, and Republican lawmakers announced last week that they've reached an agreement to expand the government-funded health care program. Cooper is likely to mention the issue in the speech.

Republican House Speaker Tim Moore will be presiding.

“I’ll be interested to hear what the governor’s thoughts are," Moore told reporters. "We always take those into account, and glad to be hosting him here yet again.”

Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger have traditionally given a Republican rebuttal following the speech. But this year that honor goes to Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, who’s expected to run for governor next year.

Robinson said in a news release that he plans to talk about "the great work we have done for the people of North Carolina, and the vision we have moving forward.”

You can hear both speeches along with our analysis live Monday at 7 p.m. on WUNC.

Colin Campbell covers politics for WUNC as the station's capitol bureau chief.