This morning, President Emmanuel Macron of France, our nation’s oldest ally, will address a joint meeting of Congress, accepting an invitation from Speaker Ryan.

This continues a storied tradition that dates back to 1824, and Marquis de Lafayette, the French general whose service to our cause during the Revolutionary War made him a hero across our new nation. President Macron will speaking in the Hall of the House near a portrait of Lafayette.

There’s more history below, but first, we have all the coverage you need for this special day:

For The Trivia Buffs

  • President Macron is the eighth French president to address a joint meeting of Congress. He is the first since Nicolas Sarkozy, on November 7, 2007.
  • This is the second address by a foreign leader to a joint meeting during this speakership. Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India addressed Congress on June 8, 2016.
  • While this tradition dates back to Lafayette, the practice of foreign leaders addressing formal joint meetings became standard practice after 1945. Here is a complete list of addresses by foreign leaders.
  • Note that this is different from a joint session of Congress. Joint sessions are traditionally reserved for presidents to fulfill their constitutional responsibility to report on the state of the union. The House Historian breaks down the difference.