Congress Prepares for Pope’s Speech

Credit: Architect of the Capitol(WASHINGTON) –Pope Francis will speak before a joint meeting of Congress on Thursday, the first time a pope has given such a speech.

House Speaker John Boehner is playing host to the pope while he is on Capitol Hill but, as he has throughout the trip, Vice President Joe Biden will be present. Biden and Boehner are the two highest-ranking U.S. elected officials who are Catholic.

The House Chamber is expected to include seven of the 2016 presidential candidates: Sens. Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Lindsey Graham and Bernie Sanders, in addition to retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson and N.J. Gov. Chris Christie.

Each member of the House received 50 tickets for the pope’s appearance on Capitol Hill and each senator received 200 tickets.

Each member of Congress also received one guest ticket for the speech inside the House chamber. Members are using those tickets to bring a mix of spouses, family, staffers, constituents and religious leaders from their districts.

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