in reported speech have changes to

What is Reported Speech and how to use it? with Examples

Published by

Olivia Drake

Reported speech and indirect speech are two terms that refer to the same concept, which is the act of expressing what someone else has said.

On this page:

Reported speech is different from direct speech because it does not use the speaker’s exact words. Instead, the reporting verb is used to introduce the reported speech, and the tense and pronouns are changed to reflect the shift in perspective. There are two main types of reported speech: statements and questions.

1. Reported Statements: In reported statements, the reporting verb is usually “said.” The tense in the reported speech changes from the present simple to the past simple, and any pronouns referring to the speaker or listener are changed to reflect the shift in perspective. For example, “I am going to the store,” becomes “He said that he was going to the store.”

2. Reported Questions: In reported questions, the reporting verb is usually “asked.” The tense in the reported speech changes from the present simple to the past simple, and the word order changes from a question to a statement. For example, “What time is it?” becomes “She asked what time it was.”

It’s important to note that the tense shift in reported speech depends on the context and the time of the reported speech. Here are a few more examples:

  • Direct speech: “I will call you later.”Reported speech: He said that he would call me later.
  • Direct speech: “Did you finish your homework?”Reported speech: She asked if I had finished my homework.
  • Direct speech: “I love pizza.”Reported speech: They said that they loved pizza.

When do we use reported speech?

Reported speech is used to report what someone else has said, thought, or written. It is often used in situations where you want to relate what someone else has said without quoting them directly.

Reported speech can be used in a variety of contexts, such as in news reports, academic writing, and everyday conversation. Some common situations where reported speech is used include:

News reports:  Journalists often use reported speech to quote what someone said in an interview or press conference.

Business and professional communication:  In professional settings, reported speech can be used to summarize what was discussed in a meeting or to report feedback from a customer.

Conversational English:  In everyday conversations, reported speech is used to relate what someone else said. For example, “She told me that she was running late.”

Narration:  In written narratives or storytelling, reported speech can be used to convey what a character said or thought.

How to make reported speech?

1. Change the pronouns and adverbs of time and place: In reported speech, you need to change the pronouns, adverbs of time and place to reflect the new speaker or point of view. Here’s an example:

Direct speech: “I’m going to the store now,” she said. Reported speech: She said she was going to the store then.

In this example, the pronoun “I” is changed to “she” and the adverb “now” is changed to “then.”

2. Change the tense: In reported speech, you usually need to change the tense of the verb to reflect the change from direct to indirect speech. Here’s an example:

Direct speech: “I will meet you at the park tomorrow,” he said. Reported speech: He said he would meet me at the park the next day.

In this example, the present tense “will” is changed to the past tense “would.”

3. Change reporting verbs: In reported speech, you can use different reporting verbs such as “say,” “tell,” “ask,” or “inquire” depending on the context of the speech. Here’s an example:

Direct speech: “Did you finish your homework?” she asked. Reported speech: She asked if I had finished my homework.

In this example, the reporting verb “asked” is changed to “said” and “did” is changed to “had.”

Overall, when making reported speech, it’s important to pay attention to the verb tense and the changes in pronouns, adverbs, and reporting verbs to convey the original speaker’s message accurately.

How do I change the pronouns and adverbs in reported speech?

1. Changing Pronouns: In reported speech, the pronouns in the original statement must be changed to reflect the perspective of the new speaker. Generally, the first person pronouns (I, me, my, mine, we, us, our, ours) are changed according to the subject of the reporting verb, while the second and third person pronouns (you, your, yours, he, him, his, she, her, hers, it, its, they, them, their, theirs) are changed according to the object of the reporting verb. For example:

Direct speech: “I love chocolate.” Reported speech: She said she loved chocolate.

Direct speech: “You should study harder.” Reported speech: He advised me to study harder.

Direct speech: “She is reading a book.” Reported speech: They noticed that she was reading a book.

2. Changing Adverbs: In reported speech, the adverbs and adverbial phrases that indicate time or place may need to be changed to reflect the perspective of the new speaker. For example:

Direct speech: “I’m going to the cinema tonight.” Reported speech: She said she was going to the cinema that night.

Direct speech: “He is here.” Reported speech: She said he was there.

Note that the adverb “now” usually changes to “then” or is omitted altogether in reported speech, depending on the context.

It’s important to keep in mind that the changes made to pronouns and adverbs in reported speech depend on the context and the perspective of the new speaker. With practice, you can become more comfortable with making these changes in reported speech.

How do I change the tense in reported speech?

In reported speech, the tense of the reported verb usually changes to reflect the change from direct to indirect speech. Here are some guidelines on how to change the tense in reported speech:

Present simple in direct speech changes to past simple in reported speech. For example: Direct speech: “I like pizza.” Reported speech: She said she liked pizza.

Present continuous in direct speech changes to past continuous in reported speech. For example: Direct speech: “I am studying for my exam.” Reported speech: He said he was studying for his exam.

Present perfect in direct speech changes to past perfect in reported speech. For example: Direct speech: “I have finished my work.” Reported speech: She said she had finished her work.

Past simple in direct speech changes to past perfect in reported speech. For example: Direct speech: “I visited my grandparents last weekend.” Reported speech: She said she had visited her grandparents the previous weekend.

Will in direct speech changes to would in reported speech. For example: Direct speech: “I will help you with your project.” Reported speech: He said he would help me with my project.

Can in direct speech changes to could in reported speech. For example: Direct speech: “I can speak French.” Reported speech: She said she could speak French.

Remember that the tense changes in reported speech depend on the tense of the verb in the direct speech, and the tense you use in reported speech should match the time frame of the new speaker’s perspective. With practice, you can become more comfortable with changing the tense in reported speech.

Do I always need to use a reporting verb in reported speech?

No, you do not always need to use a reporting verb in reported speech. However, using a reporting verb can help to clarify who is speaking and add more context to the reported speech.

In some cases, the reported speech can be introduced by phrases such as “I heard that” or “It seems that” without using a reporting verb. For example:

Direct speech: “I’m going to the cinema tonight.” Reported speech with a reporting verb: She said she was going to the cinema tonight. Reported speech without a reporting verb: It seems that she’s going to the cinema tonight.

However, it’s important to note that using a reporting verb can help to make the reported speech more formal and accurate. When using reported speech in academic writing or journalism, it’s generally recommended to use a reporting verb to make the reporting more clear and credible.

Some common reporting verbs include say, tell, explain, ask, suggest, and advise. For example:

Direct speech: “I think we should invest in renewable energy.” Reported speech with a reporting verb: She suggested that they invest in renewable energy.

Overall, while using a reporting verb is not always required, it can be helpful to make the reported speech more clear and accurate

How to use reported speech to report questions and commands?

1. Reporting Questions: When reporting questions, you need to use an introductory phrase such as “asked” or “wondered” followed by the question word (if applicable), subject, and verb. You also need to change the word order to make it a statement. Here’s an example:

Direct speech: “What time is the meeting?” Reported speech: She asked what time the meeting was.

Note that the question mark is not used in reported speech.

2. Reporting Commands: When reporting commands, you need to use an introductory phrase such as “ordered” or “told” followed by the person, to + infinitive, and any additional information. Here’s an example:

Direct speech: “Clean your room!” Reported speech: She ordered me to clean my room.

Note that the exclamation mark is not used in reported speech.

In both cases, the tense of the reported verb should be changed accordingly. For example, present simple changes to past simple, and future changes to conditional. Here are some examples:

Direct speech: “Will you go to the party with me?”Reported speech: She asked if I would go to the party with her. Direct speech: “Please bring me a glass of water.”Reported speech: She requested that I bring her a glass of water.

Remember that when using reported speech to report questions and commands, the introductory phrases and verb tenses are important to convey the intended meaning accurately.

How to make questions in reported speech?

To make questions in reported speech, you need to use an introductory phrase such as “asked” or “wondered” followed by the question word (if applicable), subject, and verb. You also need to change the word order to make it a statement. Here are the steps to make questions in reported speech:

Identify the reporting verb: The first step is to identify the reporting verb in the sentence. Common reporting verbs used to report questions include “asked,” “inquired,” “wondered,” and “wanted to know.”

Change the tense and pronouns: Next, you need to change the tense and pronouns in the sentence to reflect the shift from direct to reported speech. The tense of the verb is usually shifted back one tense (e.g. from present simple to past simple) in reported speech. The pronouns should also be changed as necessary to reflect the shift in perspective from the original speaker to the reporting speaker.

Use an appropriate question word: If the original question contained a question word (e.g. who, what, where, when, why, how), you should use the same question word in the reported question. If the original question did not contain a question word, you can use “if” or “whether” to introduce the reported question.

Change the word order: In reported speech, the word order of the question changes from the inverted form to a normal statement form. The subject usually comes before the verb, unless the original question started with a question word.

Here are some examples of reported questions:

Direct speech: “Did you finish your homework?”Reported speech: He wanted to know if I had finished my homework. Direct speech: “Where are you going?”Reported speech: She wondered where I was going.

Remember that when making questions in reported speech, the introductory phrases and verb tenses are important to convey the intended meaning accurately.

Here you can find more examples of direct and indirect questions

What is the difference between reported speech an indirect speech?

In reported or indirect speech, you are retelling or reporting what someone said using your own words. The tense of the reported speech is usually shifted back one tense from the tense used in the original statement. For example, if someone said, “I am going to the store,” in reported speech you would say, “He/she said that he/she was going to the store.”

The main difference between reported speech and indirect speech is that reported speech usually refers to spoken language, while indirect speech can refer to both spoken and written language. Additionally, indirect speech is a broader term that includes reported speech as well as other ways of expressing what someone else has said, such as paraphrasing or summarizing.

Examples of direct speech to reported

  • Direct speech: “I am hungry,” she said. Reported speech: She said she was hungry.
  • Direct speech: “Can you pass the salt, please?” he asked. Reported speech: He asked her to pass the salt.
  • Direct speech: “I will meet you at the cinema,” he said. Reported speech: He said he would meet her at the cinema.
  • Direct speech: “I have been working on this project for hours,” she said. Reported speech: She said she had been working on the project for hours.
  • Direct speech: “What time does the train leave?” he asked. Reported speech: He asked what time the train left.
  • Direct speech: “I love playing the piano,” she said. Reported speech: She said she loved playing the piano.
  • Direct speech: “I am going to the grocery store,” he said. Reported speech: He said he was going to the grocery store.
  • Direct speech: “Did you finish your homework?” the teacher asked. Reported speech: The teacher asked if he had finished his homework.
  • Direct speech: “I want to go to the beach,” she said. Reported speech: She said she wanted to go to the beach.
  • Direct speech: “Do you need help with that?” he asked. Reported speech: He asked if she needed help with that.
  • Direct speech: “I can’t come to the party,” he said. Reported speech: He said he couldn’t come to the party.
  • Direct speech: “Please don’t leave me,” she said. Reported speech: She begged him not to leave her.
  • Direct speech: “I have never been to London before,” he said. Reported speech: He said he had never been to London before.
  • Direct speech: “Where did you put my phone?” she asked. Reported speech: She asked where she had put her phone.
  • Direct speech: “I’m sorry for being late,” he said. Reported speech: He apologized for being late.
  • Direct speech: “I need some help with this math problem,” she said. Reported speech: She said she needed some help with the math problem.
  • Direct speech: “I am going to study abroad next year,” he said. Reported speech: He said he was going to study abroad the following year.
  • Direct speech: “Can you give me a ride to the airport?” she asked. Reported speech: She asked him to give her a ride to the airport.
  • Direct speech: “I don’t know how to fix this,” he said. Reported speech: He said he didn’t know how to fix it.
  • Direct speech: “I hate it when it rains,” she said. Reported speech: She said she hated it when it rained.

Share this:

Leave a reply cancel reply, i’m olivia.

in reported speech have changes to

Welcome to my virtual classroom! Join me on a journey of language and learning, where we explore the wonders of English together. Let’s discover the joy of words and education!

Let’s connect

Join the fun!

Stay updated with our latest tutorials and ideas by joining our newsletter.

Type your email…

Recent posts

Future perfect continuous sentences with examples, future perfect sentences with examples, future continuous sentences with examples, future simple sentences with examples, past perfect continuous sentences with examples, past perfect simple sentences with examples, discover more from fluent english grammar.

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading

Reported Speech

Perfect english grammar.

in reported speech have changes to

Reported Statements

Here's how it works:

We use a 'reporting verb' like 'say' or 'tell'. ( Click here for more about using 'say' and 'tell' .) If this verb is in the present tense, it's easy. We just put 'she says' and then the sentence:

  • Direct speech: I like ice cream.
  • Reported speech: She says (that) she likes ice cream.

We don't need to change the tense, though probably we do need to change the 'person' from 'I' to 'she', for example. We also may need to change words like 'my' and 'your'. (As I'm sure you know, often, we can choose if we want to use 'that' or not in English. I've put it in brackets () to show that it's optional. It's exactly the same if you use 'that' or if you don't use 'that'.)

But , if the reporting verb is in the past tense, then usually we change the tenses in the reported speech:

  • Reported speech: She said (that) she liked ice cream.

* doesn't change.

  • Direct speech: The sky is blue.
  • Reported speech: She said (that) the sky is/was blue.

Click here for a mixed tense exercise about practise reported statements. Click here for a list of all the reported speech exercises.

Reported Questions

So now you have no problem with making reported speech from positive and negative sentences. But how about questions?

  • Direct speech: Where do you live?
  • Reported speech: She asked me where I lived.
  • Direct speech: Where is Julie?
  • Reported speech: She asked me where Julie was.
  • Direct speech: Do you like chocolate?
  • Reported speech: She asked me if I liked chocolate.

Click here to practise reported 'wh' questions. Click here to practise reported 'yes / no' questions. Reported Requests

There's more! What if someone asks you to do something (in a polite way)? For example:

  • Direct speech: Close the window, please
  • Or: Could you close the window please?
  • Or: Would you mind closing the window please?
  • Reported speech: She asked me to close the window.
  • Direct speech: Please don't be late.
  • Reported speech: She asked us not to be late.

Reported Orders

  • Direct speech: Sit down!
  • Reported speech: She told me to sit down.
  • Click here for an exercise to practise reported requests and orders.
  • Click here for an exercise about using 'say' and 'tell'.
  • Click here for a list of all the reported speech exercises.

Seonaid Beckwith

Hello! I'm Seonaid! I'm here to help you understand grammar and speak correct, fluent English.

method graphic

Read more about our learning method

Reported Speech – Rules, Examples & Worksheet

Photo of author

| Candace Osmond

Photo of author

Candace Osmond

Candace Osmond studied Advanced Writing & Editing Essentials at MHC. She’s been an International and USA TODAY Bestselling Author for over a decade. And she’s worked as an Editor for several mid-sized publications. Candace has a keen eye for content editing and a high degree of expertise in Fiction.

They say gossip is a natural part of human life. That’s why language has evolved to develop grammatical rules about the “he said” and “she said” statements. We call them reported speech.

Every time we use reported speech in English, we are talking about something said by someone else in the past. Thinking about it brings me back to high school, when reported speech was the main form of language!

Learn all about the definition, rules, and examples of reported speech as I go over everything. I also included a worksheet at the end of the article so you can test your knowledge of the topic.

What Does Reported Speech Mean?

Grammarist Article Graphic V3 2022 10 25T162134.388

Reported speech is a term we use when telling someone what another person said. You can do this while speaking or writing.

There are two kinds of reported speech you can use: direct speech and indirect speech. I’ll break each down for you.

A direct speech sentence mentions the exact words the other person said. For example:

  • Kryz said, “These are all my necklaces.”

Indirect speech changes the original speaker’s words. For example:

  • Kryz said those were all her necklaces.

When we tell someone what another individual said, we use reporting verbs like told, asked, convinced, persuaded, and said. We also change the first-person figure in the quotation into the third-person speaker.

Reported Speech Examples

We usually talk about the past every time we use reported speech. That’s because the time of speaking is already done. For example:

  • Direct speech: The employer asked me, “Do you have experience with people in the corporate setting?”

Indirect speech: The employer asked me if I had experience with people in the corporate setting.

  • Direct speech: “I’m working on my thesis,” I told James.

Indirect speech: I told James that I was working on my thesis.

Reported Speech Structure

A speech report has two parts: the reporting clause and the reported clause. Read the example below:

  • Harry said, “You need to help me.”

The reporting clause here is William said. Meanwhile, the reported clause is the 2nd clause, which is I need your help.

What are the 4 Types of Reported Speech?

Aside from direct and indirect, reported speech can also be divided into four. The four types of reported speech are similar to the kinds of sentences: imperative, interrogative, exclamatory, and declarative.

Reported Speech Rules

The rules for reported speech can be complex. But with enough practice, you’ll be able to master them all.

Choose Whether to Use That or If

The most common conjunction in reported speech is that. You can say, “My aunt says she’s outside,” or “My aunt says that she’s outside.”

Use if when you’re reporting a yes-no question. For example:

  • Direct speech: “Are you coming with us?”

Indirect speech: She asked if she was coming with them.

Verb Tense Changes

Change the reporting verb into its past form if the statement is irrelevant now. Remember that some of these words are irregular verbs, meaning they don’t follow the typical -d or -ed pattern. For example:

  • Direct speech: I dislike fried chicken.

Reported speech: She said she disliked fried chicken.

Note how the main verb in the reported statement is also in the past tense verb form.

Use the simple present tense in your indirect speech if the initial words remain relevant at the time of reporting. This verb tense also works if the report is something someone would repeat. For example:

  • Slater says they’re opening a restaurant soon.
  • Maya says she likes dogs.

This rule proves that the choice of verb tense is not a black-and-white question. The reporter needs to analyze the context of the action.

Move the tense backward when the reporting verb is in the past tense. That means:

  • Present simple becomes past simple.
  • Present perfect becomes past perfect.
  • Present continuous becomes past continuous.
  • Past simple becomes past perfect.
  • Past continuous becomes past perfect continuous.

Here are some examples:

  • The singer has left the building. (present perfect)

He said that the singers had left the building. (past perfect)

  • Her sister gave her new shows. (past simple)
  • She said that her sister had given her new shoes. (past perfect)

If the original speaker is discussing the future, change the tense of the reporting verb into the past form. There’ll also be a change in the auxiliary verbs.

  • Will or shall becomes would.
  • Will be becomes would be.
  • Will have been becomes would have been.
  • Will have becomes would have.

For example:

  • Direct speech: “I will be there in a moment.”

Indirect speech: She said that she would be there in a moment.

Do not change the verb tenses in indirect speech when the sentence has a time clause. This rule applies when the introductory verb is in the future, present, and present perfect. Here are other conditions where you must not change the tense:

  • If the sentence is a fact or generally true.
  • If the sentence’s verb is in the unreal past (using second or third conditional).
  • If the original speaker reports something right away.
  • Do not change had better, would, used to, could, might, etc.

Changes in Place and Time Reference

Changing the place and time adverb when using indirect speech is essential. For example, now becomes then and today becomes that day. Here are more transformations in adverbs of time and places.

  • This – that.
  • These – those.
  • Now – then.
  • Here – there.
  • Tomorrow – the next/following day.
  • Two weeks ago – two weeks before.
  • Yesterday – the day before.

Here are some examples.

  • Direct speech: “I am baking cookies now.”

Indirect speech: He said he was baking cookies then.

  • Direct speech: “Myra went here yesterday.”

Indirect speech: She said Myra went there the day before.

  • Direct speech: “I will go to the market tomorrow.”

Indirect speech: She said she would go to the market the next day.

Using Modals

Grammarist Article Graphic V3 2022 10 25T162624.255

If the direct speech contains a modal verb, make sure to change them accordingly.

  • Will becomes would
  • Can becomes could
  • Shall becomes should or would.
  • Direct speech: “Will you come to the ball with me?”

Indirect speech: He asked if he would come to the ball with me.

  • Direct speech: “Gina can inspect the room tomorrow because she’s free.”

Indirect speech: He said Gina could inspect the room the next day because she’s free.

However, sometimes, the modal verb should does not change grammatically. For example:

  • Direct speech: “He should go to the park.”

Indirect speech: She said that he should go to the park.

Imperative Sentences

To change an imperative sentence into a reported indirect sentence, use to for imperative and not to for negative sentences. Never use the word that in your indirect speech. Another rule is to remove the word please . Instead, say request or say. For example:

  • “Please don’t interrupt the event,” said the host.

The host requested them not to interrupt the event.

  • Jonah told her, “Be careful.”
  • Jonah ordered her to be careful.

Reported Questions

When reporting a direct question, I would use verbs like inquire, wonder, ask, etc. Remember that we don’t use a question mark or exclamation mark for reports of questions. Below is an example I made of how to change question forms.

  • Incorrect: He asked me where I live?

Correct: He asked me where I live.

Here’s another example. The first sentence uses direct speech in a present simple question form, while the second is the reported speech.

  • Where do you live?

She asked me where I live.

Wrapping Up Reported Speech

My guide has shown you an explanation of reported statements in English. Do you have a better grasp on how to use it now?

Reported speech refers to something that someone else said. It contains a subject, reporting verb, and a reported cause.

Don’t forget my rules for using reported speech. Practice the correct verb tense, modal verbs, time expressions, and place references.

Grammarist is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. When you buy via the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.

2024 © Grammarist, a Found First Marketing company. All rights reserved.

in reported speech have changes to

  • Phrases and Clauses
  • Parts of a Sentence
  • Modal Verbs
  • Relative Clauses
  • Confusing Words
  • Online Grammar Quizzes
  • Printable Grammar Worksheets
  • Courses to purchase
  • Grammar Book
  • Grammar Blog
  • Direct & Indirect Speech

Reported Speech Tenses

Reported speech tenses will change from that of the direct speech in most cases.

This is known as backshifting in reported speech , with the basic rule that a tense is shifted back to its past tense form.

This is because we are usually talking about something in the past. 

You can also watch a video of this lesson:

in reported speech have changes to

Backshifting in Reported Speech

Here are some examples of backshifting, with tenses going back from present to past:

Backshifting in Reported Speech

Reported Speech Tenses Change Chart

Below is a reported speech tense change chart with the rules for backshifting for each tense and for modal verbs.

You will see reported speech does not go back a tense if it is already in the past perfect (there is no further back it can go), and some modal verbs also do not change. 

If you are tested on this, though, these are the changes you need to make.

Reported Speech Chart for Tenses

Exceptions to the rules

This is a useful starting point. However, it is a simplification as we may not always decide or need to shift the tense back. 

For instance, if the circumstances we are reporting on  have not changed  since they were directly said, then the tense would not need to be changed. For example:

Direct Speech

  • I  am  happy 
  • (present simple)

Reported Speech

  • She said she is happy 

So if we want to convey that the situation is still true then we may keep the tense the same.

Alternatively, the tense could even forward shift. An example would be in relation to a film or book. In this case, the person may use the past tense to say that the film was good, but the present or past tense could be used when you convey that to someone else:

Direct Speech:

  • The film  was  really good!
  • (past simple)

Reported Speech:

  • He said that the film  was  very good!
  • (past simple) Or
  • He said that the film  is  very good!

As you can see, either reported speech tenses would be ok if you wanted to pass the information on to somebody else. The person said the film was good, and it is still good (it hasn't gone away).

So there are some general rules for reported speech tense changes but it can depend on the context. There may be no need to change it or you may be able to choose either tense.

Click the ' reported speech: practice forming indirect speech ' link below to practice changing tenses. 

More on Reported Speech:

In these examples of direct and indirect speech you are given a sentence in direct speech which is then connected to indirect speech.

Examples of Direct and Indirect Speech

In these examples of direct and indirect speech you are given a sentence in direct speech which is then connected to indirect speech.

Direct and indirect speech are different because in direct speech the exact words said are spoken, but in indirect or reported speech, we are reporting what was said, usually using the past tense.

Direct and Indirect Speech: The differences explained

Direct and indirect speech are different because in direct speech the exact words said are spoken, but in indirect or reported speech, we are reporting what was said, usually using the past tense.

This reported speech quiz gives you the chance to practice converting direct speech to reported speech, also known as indirect speech. This involves backshifting with the tenses.

Reported Speech Quiz - Practice forming indirect speech

This reported speech quiz gives you the chance to practice converting direct speech to reported speech, also known as indirect speech. This involves backshifting with the tenses.

Reported speech imperatives, also known as reported commands, follow a slightly different structure to normal indirect speech. We use imperatives to give orders, advice, or make requests.

Reported Speech Imperatives: Reporting commands in indirect speech

Reported speech imperatives, also known as reported commands, follow a slightly different structure to normal indirect speech. We use imperatives to give orders, advice, or make requests.

New! Comments

Any questions or comments about the grammar discussed on this page?

Post your comment here.

in reported speech have changes to

Grammar Rules

Subscribe to grammar wiz:, grammar ebook.

English Grammar Book

This is an affiliate link

Recent Articles

RSS

Modal Verbs of Request

May 18, 24 05:08 AM

Basic Rules of Punctuation in English

May 11, 24 12:42 PM

Modal Verbs of Permission: May, Can, & Could

May 06, 24 10:24 AM

Important Pages

Online Quizzes Grammar Lessons Courses Blog

Connect with Us

Youtube

Search Site

Sign up for free grammar tips, quizzes and lessons, straight into your inbox

Privacy Policy  / Disclaimer  / Terms of Use

  • English Grammar
  • Reported Speech

Reported Speech - Definition, Rules and Usage with Examples

Reported speech or indirect speech is the form of speech used to convey what was said by someone at some point of time. This article will help you with all that you need to know about reported speech, its meaning, definition, how and when to use them along with examples. Furthermore, try out the practice questions given to check how far you have understood the topic.

in reported speech have changes to

Table of Contents

Definition of reported speech, rules to be followed when using reported speech, table 1 – change of pronouns, table 2 – change of adverbs of place and adverbs of time, table 3 – change of tense, table 4 – change of modal verbs, tips to practise reported speech, examples of reported speech, check your understanding of reported speech, frequently asked questions on reported speech in english, what is reported speech.

Reported speech is the form in which one can convey a message said by oneself or someone else, mostly in the past. It can also be said to be the third person view of what someone has said. In this form of speech, you need not use quotation marks as you are not quoting the exact words spoken by the speaker, but just conveying the message.

Now, take a look at the following dictionary definitions for a clearer idea of what it is.

Reported speech, according to the Oxford Learner’s Dictionary, is defined as “a report of what somebody has said that does not use their exact words.” The Collins Dictionary defines reported speech as “speech which tells you what someone said, but does not use the person’s actual words.” According to the Cambridge Dictionary, reported speech is defined as “the act of reporting something that was said, but not using exactly the same words.” The Macmillan Dictionary defines reported speech as “the words that you use to report what someone else has said.”

Reported speech is a little different from direct speech . As it has been discussed already, reported speech is used to tell what someone said and does not use the exact words of the speaker. Take a look at the following rules so that you can make use of reported speech effectively.

  • The first thing you have to keep in mind is that you need not use any quotation marks as you are not using the exact words of the speaker.
  • You can use the following formula to construct a sentence in the reported speech.
  • You can use verbs like said, asked, requested, ordered, complained, exclaimed, screamed, told, etc. If you are just reporting a declarative sentence , you can use verbs like told, said, etc. followed by ‘that’ and end the sentence with a full stop . When you are reporting interrogative sentences, you can use the verbs – enquired, inquired, asked, etc. and remove the question mark . In case you are reporting imperative sentences , you can use verbs like requested, commanded, pleaded, ordered, etc. If you are reporting exclamatory sentences , you can use the verb exclaimed and remove the exclamation mark . Remember that the structure of the sentences also changes accordingly.
  • Furthermore, keep in mind that the sentence structure , tense , pronouns , modal verbs , some specific adverbs of place and adverbs of time change when a sentence is transformed into indirect/reported speech.

Transforming Direct Speech into Reported Speech

As discussed earlier, when transforming a sentence from direct speech into reported speech, you will have to change the pronouns, tense and adverbs of time and place used by the speaker. Let us look at the following tables to see how they work.

Here are some tips you can follow to become a pro in using reported speech.

  • Select a play, a drama or a short story with dialogues and try transforming the sentences in direct speech into reported speech.
  • Write about an incident or speak about a day in your life using reported speech.
  • Develop a story by following prompts or on your own using reported speech.

Given below are a few examples to show you how reported speech can be written. Check them out.

  • Santana said that she would be auditioning for the lead role in Funny Girl.
  • Blaine requested us to help him with the algebraic equations.
  • Karishma asked me if I knew where her car keys were.
  • The judges announced that the Warblers were the winners of the annual acapella competition.
  • Binsha assured that she would reach Bangalore by 8 p.m.
  • Kumar said that he had gone to the doctor the previous day.
  • Lakshmi asked Teena if she would accompany her to the railway station.
  • Jibin told me that he would help me out after lunch.
  • The police ordered everyone to leave from the bus stop immediately.
  • Rahul said that he was drawing a caricature.

Transform the following sentences into reported speech by making the necessary changes.

1. Rachel said, “I have an interview tomorrow.”

2. Mahesh said, “What is he doing?”

3. Sherly said, “My daughter is playing the lead role in the skit.”

4. Dinesh said, “It is a wonderful movie!”

5. Suresh said, “My son is getting married next month.”

6. Preetha said, “Can you please help me with the invitations?”

7. Anna said, “I look forward to meeting you.”

8. The teacher said, “Make sure you complete the homework before tomorrow.”

9. Sylvester said, “I am not going to cry anymore.”

10. Jade said, “My sister is moving to Los Angeles.”

Now, find out if you have answered all of them correctly.

1. Rachel said that she had an interview the next day.

2. Mahesh asked what he was doing.

3. Sherly said that her daughter was playing the lead role in the skit.

4. Dinesh exclaimed that it was a wonderful movie.

5. Suresh said that his son was getting married the following month.

6. Preetha asked if I could help her with the invitations.

7. Anna said that she looked forward to meeting me.

8. The teacher told us to make sure we completed the homework before the next day.

9. Sylvester said that he was not going to cry anymore.

10. Jade said that his sister was moving to Los Angeles.

What is reported speech?

What is the definition of reported speech.

Reported speech, according to the Oxford Learner’s Dictionary, is defined as “a report of what somebody has said that does not use their exact words.” The Collins Dictionary defines reported speech as “speech which tells you what someone said, but does not use the person’s actual words.” According to the Cambridge Dictionary, reported speech is defined as “the act of reporting something that was said, but not using exactly the same words.” The Macmillan Dictionary defines reported speech as “the words that you use to report what someone else has said.”

What is the formula of reported speech?

You can use the following formula to construct a sentence in the reported speech. Subject said that (report whatever the speaker said)

Give some examples of reported speech.

Given below are a few examples to show you how reported speech can be written.

Leave a Comment Cancel reply

Your Mobile number and Email id will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Request OTP on Voice Call

Post My Comment

in reported speech have changes to

Register with BYJU'S & Download Free PDFs

Register with byju's & watch live videos.

Reported Speech: Rules, Examples, Exceptions

YouTube video

👉 Quiz 1 / Quiz 2

Advanced Grammar Course

What is reported speech?

“Reported speech” is when we talk about what somebody else said – for example:

  • Direct Speech: “I’ve been to London three times.”
  • Reported Speech: She said she’d been to London three times.

There are a lot of tricky little details to remember, but don’t worry, I’ll explain them and we’ll see lots of examples. The lesson will have three parts – we’ll start by looking at statements in reported speech, and then we’ll learn about some exceptions to the rules, and finally we’ll cover reported questions, requests, and commands.

Reported Speech: Rules, Examples, Exceptions Espresso English

So much of English grammar – like this topic, reported speech – can be confusing, hard to understand, and even harder to use correctly. I can help you learn grammar easily and use it confidently inside my Advanced English Grammar Course.

In this course, I will make even the most difficult parts of English grammar clear to you – and there are lots of opportunities for you to practice!

Reported Speech: Rules, Examples, Exceptions Espresso English

Backshift of Verb Tenses in Reported Speech

When we use reported speech, we often change the verb tense backwards in time. This can be called “backshift.”

Here are some examples in different verb tenses:

Reported Speech (Part 1) Quiz

Exceptions to backshift in reported speech.

Now that you know some of the reported speech rules about backshift, let’s learn some exceptions.

There are two situations in which we do NOT need to change the verb tense.

No backshift needed when the situation is still true

For example, if someone says “I have three children” (direct speech) then we would say “He said he has three children” because the situation continues to be true.

If I tell you “I live in the United States” (direct speech) then you could tell someone else “She said she lives in the United States” (that’s reported speech) because it is still true.

When the situation is still true, then we don’t need to backshift the verb.

Reported Speech: Rules, Examples, Exceptions Espresso English

He said he HAS three children

But when the situation is NOT still true, then we DO need to backshift the verb.

Imagine your friend says, “I have a headache.”

  • If you immediately go and talk to another friend, you could say, “She said she has a headache,” because the situation is still true
  • If you’re talking about that conversation a month after it happened, then you would say, “She said she had a headache,” because it’s no longer true.

No backshift needed when the situation is still in the future

We also don’t need to backshift to the verb when somebody said something about the future, and the event is still in the future.

Here’s an example:

  • On Monday, my friend said, “I ‘ll call you on Friday .”
  • “She said she ‘ll call me on Friday”, because Friday is still in the future from now.
  • It is also possible to say, “She said she ‘d (she would) call me on Friday.”
  • Both of them are correct, so the backshift in this case is optional.

Let’s look at a different situation:

  • On Monday, my friend said, “I ‘ll call you on Tuesday .”
  • “She said she ‘d  call me on Tuesday.” I must backshift because the event is NOT still in the future.

Reported Speech: Rules, Examples, Exceptions Espresso English

Review: Reported Speech, Backshift, & Exceptions

Quick review:

  • Normally in reported speech we backshift the verb, we put it in a verb tense that’s a little bit further in the past.
  • when the situation is still true
  • when the situation is still in the future

Reported Requests, Orders, and Questions

Those were the rules for reported statements, just regular sentences.

What about reported speech for questions, requests, and orders?

For reported requests, we use “asked (someone) to do something”:

  • “Please make a copy of this report.” (direct speech)
  • She asked me to make a copy of the report. (reported speech)

For reported orders, we use “told (someone) to do something:”

  • “Go to the bank.” (direct speech)
  • “He told me to go to the bank.” (reported speech)

The main verb stays in the infinitive with “to”:

  • She asked me to make a copy of the report. She asked me  make  a copy of the report.
  • He told me to go to the bank. He told me  go  to the bank.

For yes/no questions, we use “asked if” and “wanted to know if” in reported speech.

  • “Are you coming to the party?” (direct)
  • He asked if I was coming to the party. (reported)
  • “Did you turn off the TV?” (direct)
  • She wanted to know if I had turned off the TV.” (reported)

The main verb changes and back shifts according to the rules and exceptions we learned earlier.

Notice that we don’t use do/does/did in the reported question:

  • She wanted to know did I turn off the TV.
  • She wanted to know if I had turned off the TV.

For other questions that are not yes/no questions, we use asked/wanted to know (without “if”):

  • “When was the company founded?” (direct)
  • She asked when the company was founded.” (reported)
  • “What kind of car do you drive?” (direct)
  • He wanted to know what kind of car I drive. (reported)

Again, notice that we don’t use do/does/did in reported questions:

  • “Where does he work?”
  • She wanted to know  where does he work.
  • She wanted to know where he works.

Also, in questions with the verb “to be,” the word order changes in the reported question:

  • “Where were you born?” ([to be] + subject)
  • He asked where I was born. (subject + [to be])
  • He asked where was I born.

Reported Speech: Rules, Examples, Exceptions Espresso English

Reported Speech (Part 2) Quiz

Learn more about reported speech:

  • Reported speech: Perfect English Grammar
  • Reported speech: BJYU’s

If you want to take your English grammar to the next level, then my Advanced English Grammar Course is for you! It will help you master the details of the English language, with clear explanations of essential grammar topics, and lots of practice. I hope to see you inside!

I’ve got one last little exercise for you, and that is to write sentences using reported speech. Think about a conversation you’ve had in the past, and write about it – let’s see you put this into practice right away.

Master the details of English grammar:

Reported Speech: Rules, Examples, Exceptions Espresso English

More Espresso English Lessons:

About the author.

' src=

Shayna Oliveira

Shayna Oliveira is the founder of Espresso English, where you can improve your English fast - even if you don’t have much time to study. Millions of students are learning English from her clear, friendly, and practical lessons! Shayna is a CELTA-certified teacher with 10+ years of experience helping English learners become more fluent in her English courses.

Games4esl logo

100 Reported Speech Examples: How To Change Direct Speech Into Indirect Speech

Reported speech, also known as indirect speech, is a way of communicating what someone else has said without quoting their exact words. For example, if your friend said, “ I am going to the store ,” in reported speech, you might convey this as, “ My friend said he was going to the store. ” Reported speech is common in both spoken and written language, especially in storytelling, news reporting, and everyday conversations.

Reported speech can be quite challenging for English language learners because in order to change direct speech into reported speech, one must change the perspective and tense of what was said by the original speaker or writer. In this guide, we will explain in detail how to change direct speech into indirect speech and provide lots of examples of reported speech to help you understand. Here are the key aspects of converting direct speech into reported speech.

Reported Speech: Changing Pronouns

Pronouns are usually changed to match the perspective of the person reporting the speech. For example, “I” in direct speech may become “he” or “she” in reported speech, depending on the context. Here are some example sentences:

  • Direct : “I am going to the park.” Reported : He said he was going to the park .
  • Direct : “You should try the new restaurant.” Reported : She said that I should try the new restaurant.
  • Direct : “We will win the game.” Reported : They said that they would win the game.
  • Direct : “She loves her new job.” Reported : He said that she loves her new job.
  • Direct : “He can’t come to the party.” Reported : She said that he couldn’t come to the party.
  • Direct : “It belongs to me.” Reported : He said that it belonged to him .
  • Direct : “They are moving to a new city.” Reported : She said that they were moving to a new city.
  • Direct : “You are doing a great job.” Reported : He told me that I was doing a great job.
  • Direct : “I don’t like this movie.” Reported : She said that she didn’t like that movie.
  • Direct : “We have finished our work.” Reported : They said that they had finished their work.
  • Direct : “You will need to sign here.” Reported : He said that I would need to sign there.
  • Direct : “She can solve the problem.” Reported : He said that she could solve the problem.
  • Direct : “He was not at home yesterday.” Reported : She said that he had not been at home the day before.
  • Direct : “It is my responsibility.” Reported : He said that it was his responsibility.
  • Direct : “We are planning a surprise.” Reported : They said that they were planning a surprise.

Reported Speech: Reporting Verbs

In reported speech, various reporting verbs are used depending on the nature of the statement or the intention behind the communication. These verbs are essential for conveying the original tone, intent, or action of the speaker. Here are some examples demonstrating the use of different reporting verbs in reported speech:

  • Direct: “I will help you,” she promised . Reported: She promised that she would help me.
  • Direct: “You should study harder,” he advised . Reported: He advised that I should study harder.
  • Direct: “I didn’t take your book,” he denied . Reported: He denied taking my book .
  • Direct: “Let’s go to the cinema,” she suggested . Reported: She suggested going to the cinema .
  • Direct: “I love this song,” he confessed . Reported: He confessed that he loved that song.
  • Direct: “I haven’t seen her today,” she claimed . Reported: She claimed that she hadn’t seen her that day.
  • Direct: “I will finish the project,” he assured . Reported: He assured me that he would finish the project.
  • Direct: “I’m not feeling well,” she complained . Reported: She complained of not feeling well.
  • Direct: “This is how you do it,” he explained . Reported: He explained how to do it.
  • Direct: “I saw him yesterday,” she stated . Reported: She stated that she had seen him the day before.
  • Direct: “Please open the window,” he requested . Reported: He requested that I open the window.
  • Direct: “I can win this race,” he boasted . Reported: He boasted that he could win the race.
  • Direct: “I’m moving to London,” she announced . Reported: She announced that she was moving to London.
  • Direct: “I didn’t understand the instructions,” he admitted . Reported: He admitted that he didn’t understand the instructions.
  • Direct: “I’ll call you tonight,” she promised . Reported: She promised to call me that night.

Reported Speech: Tense Shifts

When converting direct speech into reported speech, the verb tense is often shifted back one step in time. This is known as the “backshift” of tenses. It’s essential to adjust the tense to reflect the time elapsed between the original speech and the reporting. Here are some examples to illustrate how different tenses in direct speech are transformed in reported speech:

  • Direct: “I am eating.” Reported: He said he was eating.
  • Direct: “They will go to the park.” Reported: She mentioned they would go to the park.
  • Direct: “We have finished our homework.” Reported: They told me they had finished their homework.
  • Direct: “I do my exercises every morning.” Reported: He explained that he did his exercises every morning.
  • Direct: “She is going to start a new job.” Reported: He heard she was going to start a new job.
  • Direct: “I can solve this problem.” Reported: She said she could solve that problem.
  • Direct: “We are visiting Paris next week.” Reported: They said they were visiting Paris the following week.
  • Direct: “I will be waiting outside.” Reported: He stated he would be waiting outside.
  • Direct: “They have been studying for hours.” Reported: She mentioned they had been studying for hours.
  • Direct: “I can’t understand this chapter.” Reported: He complained that he couldn’t understand that chapter.
  • Direct: “We were planning a surprise.” Reported: They told me they had been planning a surprise.
  • Direct: “She has to complete her assignment.” Reported: He said she had to complete her assignment.
  • Direct: “I will have finished the project by Monday.” Reported: She stated she would have finished the project by Monday.
  • Direct: “They are going to hold a meeting.” Reported: She heard they were going to hold a meeting.
  • Direct: “I must leave.” Reported: He said he had to leave.

Reported Speech: Changing Time and Place References

When converting direct speech into reported speech, references to time and place often need to be adjusted to fit the context of the reported speech. This is because the time and place relative to the speaker may have changed from the original statement to the time of reporting. Here are some examples to illustrate how time and place references change:

  • Direct: “I will see you tomorrow .” Reported: He said he would see me the next day .
  • Direct: “We went to the park yesterday .” Reported: They said they went to the park the day before .
  • Direct: “I have been working here since Monday .” Reported: She mentioned she had been working there since Monday .
  • Direct: “Let’s meet here at noon.” Reported: He suggested meeting there at noon.
  • Direct: “I bought this last week .” Reported: She said she had bought it the previous week .
  • Direct: “I will finish this by tomorrow .” Reported: He stated he would finish it by the next day .
  • Direct: “She will move to New York next month .” Reported: He heard she would move to New York the following month .
  • Direct: “They were at the festival this morning .” Reported: She said they were at the festival that morning .
  • Direct: “I saw him here yesterday.” Reported: She mentioned she saw him there the day before.
  • Direct: “We will return in a week .” Reported: They said they would return in a week .
  • Direct: “I have an appointment today .” Reported: He said he had an appointment that day .
  • Direct: “The event starts next Friday .” Reported: She mentioned the event starts the following Friday .
  • Direct: “I lived in Berlin two years ago .” Reported: He stated he had lived in Berlin two years before .
  • Direct: “I will call you tonight .” Reported: She said she would call me that night .
  • Direct: “I was at the office yesterday .” Reported: He mentioned he was at the office the day before .

Reported Speech: Question Format

When converting questions from direct speech into reported speech, the format changes significantly. Unlike statements, questions require rephrasing into a statement format and often involve the use of introductory verbs like ‘asked’ or ‘inquired’. Here are some examples to demonstrate how questions in direct speech are converted into statements in reported speech:

  • Direct: “Are you coming to the party?” Reported: She asked if I was coming to the party.
  • Direct: “What time is the meeting?” Reported: He inquired what time the meeting was.
  • Direct: “Why did you leave early?” Reported: They wanted to know why I had left early.
  • Direct: “Can you help me with this?” Reported: She asked if I could help her with that.
  • Direct: “Where did you buy this?” Reported: He wondered where I had bought that.
  • Direct: “Who is going to the concert?” Reported: They asked who was going to the concert.
  • Direct: “How do you solve this problem?” Reported: She questioned how to solve that problem.
  • Direct: “Is this the right way to the station?” Reported: He inquired whether it was the right way to the station.
  • Direct: “Do you know her name?” Reported: They asked if I knew her name.
  • Direct: “Why are they moving out?” Reported: She wondered why they were moving out.
  • Direct: “Have you seen my keys?” Reported: He asked if I had seen his keys.
  • Direct: “What were they talking about?” Reported: She wanted to know what they had been talking about.
  • Direct: “When will you return?” Reported: He asked when I would return.
  • Direct: “Can she drive a manual car?” Reported: They inquired if she could drive a manual car.
  • Direct: “How long have you been waiting?” Reported: She asked how long I had been waiting.

Reported Speech: Omitting Quotation Marks

In reported speech, quotation marks are not used, differentiating it from direct speech which requires them to enclose the spoken words. Reported speech summarizes or paraphrases what someone said without the need for exact wording. Here are examples showing how direct speech with quotation marks is transformed into reported speech without them:

  • Direct: “I am feeling tired,” she said. Reported: She said she was feeling tired.
  • Direct: “We will win the game,” he exclaimed. Reported: He exclaimed that they would win the game.
  • Direct: “I don’t like apples,” the boy declared. Reported: The boy declared that he didn’t like apples.
  • Direct: “You should visit Paris,” she suggested. Reported: She suggested that I should visit Paris.
  • Direct: “I will be late,” he warned. Reported: He warned that he would be late.
  • Direct: “I can’t believe you did that,” she expressed in surprise. Reported: She expressed her surprise that I had done that.
  • Direct: “I need help with this task,” he admitted. Reported: He admitted that he needed help with the task.
  • Direct: “I have never been to Italy,” she confessed. Reported: She confessed that she had never been to Italy.
  • Direct: “We saw a movie last night,” they mentioned. Reported: They mentioned that they saw a movie the night before.
  • Direct: “I am learning to play the piano,” he revealed. Reported: He revealed that he was learning to play the piano.
  • Direct: “You must finish your homework,” she instructed. Reported: She instructed that I must finish my homework.
  • Direct: “I will call you tomorrow,” he promised. Reported: He promised that he would call me the next day.
  • Direct: “I have finished my assignment,” she announced. Reported: She announced that she had finished her assignment.
  • Direct: “I cannot attend the meeting,” he apologized. Reported: He apologized for not being able to attend the meeting.
  • Direct: “I don’t remember where I put it,” she confessed. Reported: She confessed that she didn’t remember where she put it.

Reported Speech Quiz

Thanks for reading! I hope you found these reported speech examples useful. Before you go, why not try this Reported Speech Quiz and see if you can change indirect speech into reported speech?

in reported speech have changes to

Reported Speech – Free Exercise

Write the following sentences in indirect speech. Pay attention to backshift and the changes to pronouns, time, and place.

  • Two weeks ago, he said, “I visited this museum last week.” → Two weeks ago, he said that   . I → he|simple past → past perfect|this → that|last …→ the … before
  • She claimed, “I am the best for this job.” → She claimed that   . I → she|simple present→ simple past|this→ that
  • Last year, the minister said, “The crisis will be overcome next year.” → Last year, the minister said that   . will → would|next …→ the following …
  • My riding teacher said, “Nobody has ever fallen off a horse here.” → My riding teacher said that   . present perfect → past perfect|here→ there
  • Last month, the boss explained, “None of my co-workers has to work overtime now.” → Last month, the boss explained that   . my → his/her|simple present→ simple past|now→ then

Rewrite the question sentences in indirect speech.

  • She asked, “What did he say?” → She asked   . The subject comes directly after the question word.|simple past → past perfect
  • He asked her, “Do you want to dance?” → He asked her   . The subject comes directly after whether/if |you → she|simple present → simple past
  • I asked him, “How old are you?” → I asked him   . The subject comes directly after the question word + the corresponding adjective (how old)|you→ he|simple present → simple past
  • The tourists asked me, “Can you show us the way?” → The tourists asked me   . The subject comes directly after whether/if |you→ I|us→ them
  • The shop assistant asked the woman, “Which jacket have you already tried on?” → The shop assistant asked the woman   . The subject comes directly after the question word|you→ she|present perfect → past perfect

Rewrite the demands/requests in indirect speech.

  • The passenger requested the taxi driver, “Stop the car.” → The passenger requested the taxi driver   . to + same wording as in direct speech
  • The mother told her son, “Don’t be so loud.” → The mother told her son   . not to + same wording as in direct speech, but remove don’t
  • The policeman told us, “Please keep moving.” → The policeman told us   . to + same wording as in direct speech ( please can be left off)
  • She told me, “Don’t worry.” → She told me   . not to + same wording as in direct speech, but remove don’t
  • The zookeeper told the children, “Don’t feed the animals.” → The zookeeper told the children   . not to + same wording as in direct speech, but remove don’t

How good is your English?

Find out with Lingolia’s free grammar test

Take the test!

Maybe later

in reported speech have changes to

Conditionals and Reported Speech

in reported speech have changes to

Have you started learning conditionals ? You probably fear you’ll make a lot of mistakes with all those complicated rules, right? And to make things even more complicated, there’s the reported speech. How can you report conditional sentences?

There are numerous English language schools and programs in California that can help you with all the doubts you may have. But to truly master the conditionals and other aspects of the English language, you should rely on as many reliable resources as possible. So, keep reading this article as we explain how if-clauses are changed in reported speech. 

Contact us online and get a quote today or call us via WhatsApp!

in reported speech have changes to

Can we use "if" in reported speech?

“If” is a conjunction we use in indirect speech when we report yes/no questions. 

Direct speech: Do you want to go to the cinema?

Indirect speech: He asked if I wanted to go to the cinema.

Also, if we want to report a conditional sentence, we’ll keep “if” in the reported speech too.

Direct speech: If it doesn’t rain, I’ll go for a walk.

Indirect speech: She said that if it didn’t rain, she’d go for a walk.

How do you change the if-clause in reported speech?

To see what tense and modal changes occur, let’s examine each type of conditional sentence separately. 

Zero conditional in reported speech

The tense shift will occur only in instances when the condition is no longer valid. Otherwise, the tenses remain the same.

Mom: If dad gets angry, he always reads a newspaper in the living room and ignores everybody else.

Mom said that if dad gets angry, he always reads a newspaper in the living room and ignores everybody else. (Dad still does this.)

Mom said that if dad got angry, he always read a newspaper in the living room and ignored everybody else. (Dad doesn’t do this anymore. Mom just described his past habit.)

First conditional in reported speech

If we need to report a first conditional sentence, the following changes might take place.

Luke: If we hurry up, we’ll catch the bus .

Luke said that if we hurry up, we’ll catch the bus. (This information is still relevant. Luke and his interlocutor still have time to catch the bus.)

Luke said that if we hurried up, we’d catch the bus. (These reported words aren’t relevant anymore. The bus has already left. Note the tense and modal shift: the present simple becomes the past simple , and will becomes would .)

Second conditional in reported speech

The above tense and modal shifting rules apply to the second conditional too. If the condition is still relevant, no changes occur. However, if it’s outdated, the past simple becomes the past perfect , and would becomes would + have + past participle. 

Sofia: If I had more money, I would buy a new car. 

Sofia said that if she had more money, she would buy a new car. (Sofia still doesn’t have money, and consequently, she can’t buy a new car.)

Sofia said that if she had had more money, she would have bought a new car. (The speaker remembers Sofia’s words and wishes from the past. Maybe Sofia doesn’t have any money issues now.)

Third conditional in reported speech

When reporting third conditionals, there is no change in the verb form:

Tania: If I had seen him, I would have told him about the accident.

Tania said that if she had seen him, she would have told him about the accident .

Where to find the most reliable English language schools and programs in California?

Are you fed up with practicing English by yourself? Do you want to find a California-based school with a program specially tailored to satisfy your learning needs? The College of English Language is there for you. Our teachers boast many years of teaching experience under their belt, and successful teaching methods up their sleeves, and you'll soon notice a huge difference in your daily communication in English .

Visit us in one of our three locations in San Diego, Santa Monica , and Pacific Beach, and enjoy learning English in state-of-the-art classrooms with top teachers. We are waiting for you!

Cambridge Dictionary

  • Cambridge Dictionary +Plus

Reported speech: indirect speech

Indirect speech focuses more on the content of what someone said rather than their exact words. In indirect speech , the structure of the reported clause depends on whether the speaker is reporting a statement, a question or a command.

Indirect speech: reporting statements

Indirect reports of statements consist of a reporting clause and a that -clause. We often omit that , especially in informal situations:

The pilot commented that the weather had been extremely bad as the plane came in to land. (The pilot’s words were: ‘The weather was extremely bad as the plane came in to land.’ )
I told my wife I didn’t want a party on my 50th birthday. ( that -clause without that ) (or I told my wife that I didn’t want a party on my 50th birthday .)

Indirect speech: reporting questions

Reporting yes-no questions and alternative questions.

Indirect reports of yes-no questions and questions with or consist of a reporting clause and a reported clause introduced by if or whether . If is more common than whether . The reported clause is in statement form (subject + verb), not question form:

She asked if [S] [V] I was Scottish. (original yes-no question: ‘Are you Scottish?’ )
The waiter asked whether [S] we [V] wanted a table near the window. (original yes-no question: ‘Do you want a table near the window? )
He asked me if [S] [V] I had come by train or by bus. (original alternative question: ‘Did you come by train or by bus?’ )

Questions: yes-no questions ( Are you feeling cold? )

Reporting wh -questions

Indirect reports of wh -questions consist of a reporting clause, and a reported clause beginning with a wh -word ( who, what, when, where, why, how ). We don’t use a question mark:

He asked me what I wanted.
Not: He asked me what I wanted?

The reported clause is in statement form (subject + verb), not question form:

She wanted to know who [S] we [V] had invited to the party.
Not: … who had we invited …

Who , whom and what

In indirect questions with who, whom and what , the wh- word may be the subject or the object of the reported clause:

I asked them who came to meet them at the airport. ( who is the subject of came ; original question: ‘Who came to meet you at the airport?’ )
He wondered what the repairs would cost. ( what is the object of cost ; original question: ‘What will the repairs cost?’ )
She asked us what [S] we [V] were doing . (original question: ‘What are you doing?’ )
Not: She asked us what were we doing?

When , where , why and how

We also use statement word order (subject + verb) with when , where, why and how :

I asked her when [S] it [V] had happened (original question: ‘When did it happen?’ ).
Not: I asked her when had it happened?
I asked her where [S] the bus station [V] was . (original question: ‘Where is the bus station?’ )
Not: I asked her where was the bus station?
The teacher asked them how [S] they [V] wanted to do the activity . (original question: ‘How do you want to do the activity?’ )
Not: The teacher asked them how did they want to do the activity?

Questions: wh- questions

Indirect speech: reporting commands

Indirect reports of commands consist of a reporting clause, and a reported clause beginning with a to -infinitive:

The General ordered the troops to advance . (original command: ‘Advance!’ )
The chairperson told him to sit down and to stop interrupting . (original command: ‘Sit down and stop interrupting!’ )

We also use a to -infinitive clause in indirect reports with other verbs that mean wanting or getting people to do something, for example, advise, encourage, warn :

They advised me to wait till the following day. (original statement: ‘You should wait till the following day.’ )
The guard warned us not to enter the area. (original statement: ‘You must not enter the area.’ )

Verbs followed by a to -infinitive

Indirect speech: present simple reporting verb

We can use the reporting verb in the present simple in indirect speech if the original words are still true or relevant at the time of reporting, or if the report is of something someone often says or repeats:

Sheila says they’re closing the motorway tomorrow for repairs.
Henry tells me he’s thinking of getting married next year.
Rupert says dogs shouldn’t be allowed on the beach. (Rupert probably often repeats this statement.)

Newspaper headlines

We often use the present simple in newspaper headlines. It makes the reported speech more dramatic:

JUDGE TELLS REPORTER TO LEAVE COURTROOM
PRIME MINISTER SAYS FAMILIES ARE TOP PRIORITY IN TAX REFORM

Present simple ( I work )

Reported speech

Reported speech: direct speech

Indirect speech: past continuous reporting verb

In indirect speech, we can use the past continuous form of the reporting verb (usually say or tell ). This happens mostly in conversation, when the speaker wants to focus on the content of the report, usually because it is interesting news or important information, or because it is a new topic in the conversation:

Rory was telling me the big cinema in James Street is going to close down. Is that true?
Alex was saying that book sales have gone up a lot this year thanks to the Internet.

‘Backshift’ refers to the changes we make to the original verbs in indirect speech because time has passed between the moment of speaking and the time of the report.

In these examples, the present ( am ) has become the past ( was ), the future ( will ) has become the future-in-the-past ( would ) and the past ( happened ) has become the past perfect ( had happened ). The tenses have ‘shifted’ or ‘moved back’ in time.

The past perfect does not shift back; it stays the same:

Modal verbs

Some, but not all, modal verbs ‘shift back’ in time and change in indirect speech.

We can use a perfect form with have + - ed form after modal verbs, especially where the report looks back to a hypothetical event in the past:

He said the noise might have been the postman delivering letters. (original statement: ‘The noise might be the postman delivering letters.’ )
He said he would have helped us if we’d needed a volunteer. (original statement: ‘I’ll help you if you need a volunteer’ or ‘I’d help you if you needed a volunteer.’ )

Used to and ought to do not change in indirect speech:

She said she used to live in Oxford. (original statement: ‘I used to live in Oxford.’ )
The guard warned us that we ought to leave immediately. (original statement: ‘You ought to leave immediately.’ )

No backshift

We don’t need to change the tense in indirect speech if what a person said is still true or relevant or has not happened yet. This often happens when someone talks about the future, or when someone uses the present simple, present continuous or present perfect in their original words:

He told me his brother works for an Italian company. (It is still true that his brother works for an Italian company.)
She said she ’s getting married next year. (For the speakers, the time at the moment of speaking is ‘this year’.)
He said he ’s finished painting the door. (He probably said it just a short time ago.)
She promised she ’ll help us. (The promise applies to the future.)

Indirect speech: changes to pronouns

Changes to personal pronouns in indirect reports depend on whether the person reporting the speech and the person(s) who said the original words are the same or different.

Indirect speech: changes to adverbs and demonstratives

We often change demonstratives ( this, that ) and adverbs of time and place ( now, here, today , etc.) because indirect speech happens at a later time than the original speech, and perhaps in a different place.

Typical changes to demonstratives, adverbs and adverbial expressions

Indirect speech: typical errors.

The word order in indirect reports of wh- questions is the same as statement word order (subject + verb), not question word order:

She always asks me where [S] [V] I am going .
Not: She always asks me where am I going .

We don’t use a question mark when reporting wh- questions:

I asked him what he was doing.
Not: I asked him what he was doing?

{{randomImageQuizHook.quizId}}

Word of the Day

Your browser doesn't support HTML5 audio

any of the rods that join the edge of a wheel to its centre, so giving the wheel its strength

Worse than or worst of all? How to use the words ‘worse’ and ‘worst’

Worse than or worst of all? How to use the words ‘worse’ and ‘worst’

in reported speech have changes to

Learn more with +Plus

  • Recent and Recommended {{#preferredDictionaries}} {{name}} {{/preferredDictionaries}}
  • Definitions Clear explanations of natural written and spoken English English Learner’s Dictionary Essential British English Essential American English
  • Grammar and thesaurus Usage explanations of natural written and spoken English Grammar Thesaurus
  • Pronunciation British and American pronunciations with audio English Pronunciation
  • English–Chinese (Simplified) Chinese (Simplified)–English
  • English–Chinese (Traditional) Chinese (Traditional)–English
  • English–Dutch Dutch–English
  • English–French French–English
  • English–German German–English
  • English–Indonesian Indonesian–English
  • English–Italian Italian–English
  • English–Japanese Japanese–English
  • English–Norwegian Norwegian–English
  • English–Polish Polish–English
  • English–Portuguese Portuguese–English
  • English–Spanish Spanish–English
  • English–Swedish Swedish–English
  • Dictionary +Plus Word Lists

To add ${headword} to a word list please sign up or log in.

Add ${headword} to one of your lists below, or create a new one.

{{message}}

Something went wrong.

There was a problem sending your report.

  • New Hampshire
  • North Carolina
  • Pennsylvania
  • West Virginia
  • Online hoaxes
  • Coronavirus
  • Health Care
  • Immigration
  • Environment
  • Foreign Policy
  • Kamala Harris
  • Donald Trump
  • Mitch McConnell
  • Hakeem Jeffries
  • Ron DeSantis
  • Tucker Carlson
  • Sean Hannity
  • Rachel Maddow
  • PolitiFact Videos
  • 2024 Elections
  • Mostly True
  • Mostly False
  • Pants on Fire
  • Biden Promise Tracker
  • Trump-O-Meter
  • Latest Promises
  • Our Process
  • Who pays for PolitiFact?
  • Advertise with Us
  • Suggest a Fact-check
  • Corrections and Updates
  • Newsletters

Get PolitiFact in your inbox.

  • Weekly Email Newsletter
  • Daily Email Newsletter

in reported speech have changes to

  • Legal Issues
  • Social Media

Former President Donald Trump reacts May 28, 2024, as he reenters Manhattan criminal court in New York. (AP)

Former President Donald Trump reacts May 28, 2024, as he reenters Manhattan criminal court in New York. (AP)

Louis Jacobson

Fact-checking the False claim that the Trump’s NY jury verdict doesn’t have to be unanimous

If your time is short.

On May 29, Juan Merchan, the judge in former President Donald Trump’s Manhattan trial, gave the jury instructions for their deliberation, which are posted online.

He told jurors that to find Trump guilty, they must agree unanimously on two things: that Trump falsified business records and that he did so intending to commit a separate crime.

Merchan said jurors did not have to agree unanimously on what the separate crime was that Trump intended to commit.

As the jury in the Manhattan trial of former President Donald Trump headed toward deliberation May 29, Judge Juan Merchan gave jurors their instructions.

Once the instructions filtered onto social media, however, they were distorted. 

"Judge Merchan has instructed the jury they do not need to have a UNANIMOUS verdict in order to convict former President Donald J. Trump," former Fox News writer and producer Kyle Becker wrote May 29 on X .

"This is insane," the conservative End Wokeness X account posted a few minutes later to its 2.5 million followers. "New York Judge Merchan just told jurors that they DO NOT have to unanimously agree on what crime Trump is guilty of."

Other social media posts, including from Trump-aligned political strategist Steve Bannon , also claimed the jury verdict did not have to be unanimous. The posts echoed a statement Trump made May 26 on Truth Social that said Merchan imparted "FAKE options for the jury to choose from, without requiring them to be unanimous, which is completely UNAMERICAN AND UNCONSTITUTIONAL."

Trump’s campaign did not respond to a request for comment.

The posts are inaccurate. If the jury decides to convict, Merchan told them, jurors must agree unanimously on two things: that Trump falsified business records and that he did so intending to commit a separate crime.

Juror unanimity is not necessary on what separate crime Trump intended to commit. Merchan cited three possible crimes: violations of the Federal Election Campaign Act; the falsification of other business records; and a violation of tax laws.

Jurors "all need to agree on the verdict, but they can get to that result through different paths and reasoning," said Cheryl G. Bader, a Fordham University associate clinical law professor.

Duncan P. Levin, a Brooklyn, New York-based lawyer with Levin & Associates PLLC, called the social media spin on Marchan’s instructions "absurd."

"It has to be unanimous on the elements of the crime," namely that Trump "caused business records to be filed (and) intended to conceal election by unlawful means," Levin said. But it doesn’t have to be unanimous on the means, he said. 

"That is not unusual at all. (It’s) very standard," Levin said. "Someone can be convicted of murder even if the jurors disagree about the type of murder weapon."

Featured Fact-check

in reported speech have changes to

In his instructions , Merchan told jurors that any verdict must be unanimous.

"Your verdict, on each count you consider, whether guilty or not guilty, must be unanimous; that is, each and every juror must agree to it," Merchan said. "To reach a unanimous verdict, you must deliberate with the other jurors."

That’s standard in criminal law: The New York jury handbook says that in a criminal case, "a finding that the defendant is guilty or not guilty must be by unanimous vote of the jury."

But Merchan offered caveats about what aspects of a jury’s decision could diverge.

Merchan said, "In order to find the defendant guilty, however, you need not be unanimous on whether the defendant committed the crime personally, or by acting in concert with another, or both."

He also said, "Although you must conclude unanimously that the defendant conspired to promote or prevent the election of any person to a public office by unlawful means, you need not be unanimous as to what those unlawful means were."

Neama Rahmani, a former prosecutor who co-founded the firm West Coast Trial Lawyers, said, "The verdict has to be unanimous, but the jurors don’t have to agree on the other crime that the false business records furthered or covered up." 

Bill Otis, former head of the Appellate Division of the U.S. attorney’s office for Virginia’s Eastern District and special counsel to former President George H.W. Bush, said that although this split structure for jury decisions is common, he understands why Trump allies express concern about it. Otis said the parts of this case that do not require the jury’s unanimity are unusually central to the question of Trump’s guilt.

For this reason, Otis said, it could become a ripe issue for an appeals court to consider, if Trump is convicted.

Social media posts said Merchan told jurors the verdict in Trump’s trial does not need to be unanimous.

That’s not what Merchan said. To convict, the jurors must agree unanimously on two things: that Trump falsified business records, and that he did so intending to commit a separate crime. "Your verdict, on each count you consider, whether guilty or not guilty, must be unanimous," Merchan said. 

The social media posts conflated this requirement with other aspects of the deliberations that don’t require unanimity — notably, which specific crime the jurors believe Trump tried to commit by falsifying business records. The judge said jurors would need to believe only that at least one of three cited crimes could be the one furthered by the records falsification. 

We rate this statement False.

RELATED : Read all of PolitiFact’s coverage on Donald Trump indictments

Read About Our Process

The Principles of the Truth-O-Meter

Our Sources

Judge Juan Merchan, Jury instructions , delivered to jury May 29, 2024

New York State Unified Court System, Petit juror’s handbook , Revised July 2023

Donald Trump, Truth Social post , May 26, 2024

Bannon’s War Room, Instagram post , May 29, 2024

Juan4Freedom, Instagram post , May 29, 2024

Proud Elephant, Instagram post , May 29, 2024

Dennis Michael Lynch, Meta post , May 29, 2024

Kyle Becker, post on X , May 29, 2024

Washington Post, Jurors must be unanimous to convict Trump, can disagree on underlying crimes , May 29, 2024

New York Times, Live Updates: Jury Begins Deciding Trump’s Fate in Hush-Money Case , May 29, 2024

AP, Jury in Donald Trump’s hush money case asks to rehear testimony as deliberations get underway , May 29, 2024

Politico, Judge: To convict Trump of felonies, jury does not need to unanimously agree on what 'predicate' crime he committed , May 21, 2024

Email interview with Matthew J. Galluzzo, former Manhattan prosecutor now in private practice, May 29, 2024

Email interview Duncan P. Levin, Brooklyn-based lawyer with the firm Levin & Associates PLLC, May 29, 2024

Email interview with Jerry Goldfeder, New York election law attorney, May 29, 2024

Email interview with Cheryl G. Bader, associate clinical law professor at Fordham University, May 29, 2024

Email interview with Neama Rahmani, former prosecutor who co-founded the firm West Coast Trial Lawyers, May 29, 2024

Email interview with Bill Otis, former head of the Appellate Division of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia and Special Counsel to George H. W. Bush, May 29, 2024

Browse the Truth-O-Meter

More by louis jacobson.

false

Support independent fact-checking. Become a member!

Biden signs executive action drastically tightening border

WASHINGTON — Facing mounting political pressure over the migrant influx at the southern border, President Joe Biden on Tuesday signed an executive action that will temporarily shut down asylum requests once the average number of daily encounters tops 2,500 between official ports of entry, according to a senior administration official.

“The border is not a political issue to be weaponized," Biden said in a White House speech announcing the order.

The shutdown would go into effect immediately since that threshold has already been met, a senior administration official said. The border would reopen only once that number falls to 1,500. The president’s order would come under the Immigration and Nationality Act sections 212(f) and 215(a) suspending entry of noncitizens who cross the southern border into the United States unlawfully. 

Senior administration officials said Tuesday in a call with reporters that “individuals who cross the southern border unlawfully or without authorization will generally be ineligible for asylum, absent exceptionally compelling circumstances, unless they are accepted by the proclamation.”

Migrants walk past razor wire fencing after crossing the Rio Grande river in Eagle Pass, Texas

The officials said that migrants who don’t meet the requirement of having a "credible fear" when they apply for asylum will be immediately removable, and they “anticipate that we will be removing those individuals in a matter of days, if not hours,”

The White House conveyed details of the long-awaited move to lawmakers on Monday , but confirmed details of the executive action Tuesday morning ahead of planned remarks by the president in the East Room of the White House alongside mayors from several border towns.

“It’s definitely a step in the right direction,” said Texas state Rep. Eddie Morales Jr., whose district includes Eagle Pass. “One of a number of steps that are necessary for us to be able to secure the border.”

In 2018, the Trump administration tried to enact similar border restrictions but courts blocked them. The Biden administration now expects to defend the executive action against legal challenges.

Immigrants walk through razor wire surrounding a makeshift migrant camp.

The executive action will also have some exceptions, including for unaccompanied children. 

In a written statement, Donald Trump campaign spokesperson Karoline Leavett claimed that exception would give a “green light to child traffickers and sex traffickers” while reiterating the former president’s rallying cry that “the border invasion and migrant crime will not stop until Crooked Joe Biden is deported from the White House.”

Republican lawmakers are slamming the move as too little, too late. 

“(Biden) created a crisis at the border intentionally,” said Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D. “(The executive action) has more political risk than political benefit, particularly because his own base is going to reject it.”

But the White House has repeatedly argued that it was congressional Republicans who have failed to act on immigration. Earlier this year, Trump urged House GOP members to kill a bipartisan border funding bill that had been negotiated in the Senate. At the time, House Speaker Mike Johnson and other Republicans said that the Senate bill didn’t go far enough and they argued that a more hard-line immigration bill in the House was preferable. 

“President Biden has led a historic opening of lawful pathways for individuals to and including families, to enter the United States through a lawful process, including the CBP One mobile application to request an appointment to present at a port of entry, as well as family reunification programs in countries throughout the region and a historic parole process for Cubans, Haitians, Nicaraguans and Venezuelans,” a senior administration official said. “And so this measure that we are announcing today comes alongside those lawful pathways,”

The executive action comes on the heels of a  historic presidential election in Mexico  and just as the campaign in the U.S. ramps up. Trump has a  30-point edge with registered voters  on the question of which candidate would better handle immigration and border security, including a 23-point edge among Latino voters, according to a late-March CNBC national poll.

Many immigrant advocates are furious at the president’s harsher immigration policies and argue the changes will cause chaos.

“It is a betrayal of what we were told in his campaign four years ago,” said Lindsay Toczylowski, the executive director for the California-based Immigrant Defenders Law Center. “We were told that President Biden would be restoring humanity at our border. … But what we are seeing is that history is repeating itself.”

Lee Gelernt, the deputy director of the ACLU's Immigrants’ Rights Project who argued the challenge to asylum restrictions during the Trump administration, said the advocacy group planned to sue.

“ A ban on asylum is illegal just as it was when Trump unsuccessfully tried it,” Gelernt said in a statement.

Gelernt on Tuesday said the ACLU was still working out the timing of the lawsuit and where it would be filed during an interview with NBC News' Tom Llamas.

"I'm hoping that we can convince the administration, if not the courts, that this is misguided and illegal, and maybe the administration can pull it back or mitigate it," Gelernt said.

When asked about potential lawsuits during a call with reporters on Tuesday, a senior administration official said the agency was "prepared" for any forthcoming legal battles.

“I think we are accustomed to being litigated, frankly, from both sides of the political spectrum, for just about any measure we take in this space, and that is just yet another sign that there is no lasting solution to the challenges we are facing without Congress doing its job,” the official said.

CORRECTION (June 5, 2024 10:05 a.m. ET) A previous version of this article misstated the last name of the Texas state representative who represents Eagle Pass. He is Eddie Morales Jr. not Jones Jr.

in reported speech have changes to

Gabe Gutierrez is a senior White House correspondent for NBC News.

in reported speech have changes to

Monica Alba is a White House correspondent for NBC News.

  • Skip to main content
  • Keyboard shortcuts for audio player

The Americas

Mexico elects its first female president.

Emily Green

Eyder Peralta headshot

Eyder Peralta

Mexico makes history, electing its first female president

Claudia Sheimbaum celebrating during her speech in Mexico City on June 3, 2024.

Claudia Sheimbaum celebrating during her speech in Mexico City on June 3, 2024. Israel Fuguemann for NPR hide caption

MEXICO CITY — Claudia Sheinbaum, an environmental scientist and former mayor of Mexico City, was overwhelmingly elected Mexico’s first female president on Sunday, a historic milestone in a country rife with gender-based violence and misogyny.

With most of the votes counted, Mexico’s electoral agency estimates that Sheinbaum is on track to win the race with nearly 59% of the vote. Her closest rival, Xóchitl Gálvez is projected to get 28% of the vote, with the other opposition candidate, Jorge Álvarez Máynez, taking just over 10% of the vote.

In her victory speech to supporters , Sheinbaum said both rivals had conceded and had called to congratulate her on her victory. “I will become the first woman president of Mexico," she told the crowd.

The man widely seen as her political mentor, outgoing President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, posted his congratulations on X, formerly known as Twitter.

Sheinbaum has been the leading candidate to win the presidency for more than a year. In a country with one of the highest rates of murder against women in the world, Sheinbaum’s victory underscores the advances women have made in the political sphere.

Supporters of Claudia Sheinbaum, former mayor of Mexico City and presidential candidate for the Morena party, celebrate during an election night rally at Zocalo Plaza in Mexico City, Mexico, on Sunday.

Supporters of Claudia Sheinbaum, former mayor of Mexico City and presidential candidate for the Morena party, celebrate during an election night rally at Zocalo Plaza in Mexico City, Mexico, on Sunday. Israel Fuguemann for NPR hide caption

The 61-year-old climate scientist was part of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change team that would go on to share a Nobel Peace Prize with former U.S. Vice President Al Gore in 2007. Now, Sheinbaum — whose Jewish maternal grandparents immigrated from Bulgaria before the Holocaust — will hold the most powerful office in the country.

Elena Poniatowska, 92, one of Mexico's most distinguished writers, has chronicled decades of women’s history in the country. “I’ve always believed in women,” Poniatowska told NPR , days before the election. “I think it's not a dream. I think it's a battle that has been won.”

Elena Poniatowska poses for a portrait in her home in Mexico City on May 28, 2024.

A trailblazing feminist says Mexico’s ‘triumph’ of a first female president is no surprise

Despite the historic nature of Sheinbaum’s victory, many voters in Mexico see it less as a reflection of gender equality and more as a referendum on the last six years of López Obrador, colloquially known by his initials as AMLO.

He is one of the most divisive — and popular — figures in Mexican history: a folksy populist who has implemented social programs that have helped millions of people rise out of poverty but who critics say has undermined democratic institutions while empowering the military.

Fireworks appear in the sky while Claudia Sheimbaum celebrates her victory.

Fireworks appear in the sky while Claudia Sheimbaum celebrates her victory. Israel Fuguemann for NPR hide caption

Ignacio Morales cast his vote on Sunday for Sheinbaum because she has López Obrador’s backing, who Morales considers “perfect,” he said.

“I don’t have a lot of life left to live, but I will support him to the death,” said Morales, 77, who is retired. Morales rattled off a list of reasons: López Obrador has started “marvelous projects” like new train lines and oil refineries; he gives a monthly pension to elderly Mexicans and, most importantly, he takes care of the poor.

Under Mexico’s Constitution, presidents can only serve one six-year term.

Sheinbaum is López Obrador’s political protégée. She started her political career as his environmental minister after he was elected mayor of Mexico City in 2000. She has been unwaveringly loyal ever since, even supporting his pro-oil energy agenda despite her environmental background.

While Sheinbaum lacks López Obrador’s charisma and popular appeal, she has a reputation for being analytical, disciplined and exacting. Most importantly, she has promised to support López Obrador’s policies and popular social programs, including a universal pension benefit for seniors as well as providing cash payments to low-income residents.

A group of people cast their vote in a polling station in the state of Puebla in Izucar de Matamoros, Mexico. June 2, 2024.

A group of people cast their vote in a polling station in the state of Puebla in Izucar de Matamoros, Mexico. June 2, 2024. Israel Fuguemann for NPR hide caption

“Claudia represents the continuation of AMLO,” said Norma Bautista Herrera, who sells vegetables at a market in Mexico City. After López Obrador’s election in 2018, Bautista Herrera began receiving monthly payments of 660 pesos, roughly $38, to help her support her 11-year-old daughter. With that money, she buys household goods like soap, eggs, sugar and Clorox.

Gálvez, Sheinbaum’s nearest competitor for the presidency, is an Indigenous, pro-business tech entrepreneur who represented several establishment opposition parties. Despite her compelling life story, Gálvez could never distance herself from the corruption and disenchantment that voters associated with those parties.

Many who cast their vote for Gálvez were more motivated by her promised break from López Obrador and the electoral power of his Morena party than Gálvez’s campaign promises. In a country that saw one-party rule for 70 years until 2000, they worry about López Obrador’s moves to undermine judicial independence and his security policy that has resulted in record high homicides.

“He’s a dictator, and Sheinbaum is his puppet,” said Almarosa Anaya, standing outside a polling center in Mexico City’s upscale Roma Norte neighborhood with her two adult daughters. She said López Obrador wants to turn Mexico into a communist country, “like Venezuela and Cuba.”

A group carries the coffin of Jorge Huerta Cabrera in San Nicolas Tolentino, Mexico on June 2, 2024. He was a candidate for the Green Party and was murdered on May 31, two days before the vote.

A group carries the coffin of Jorge Huerta Cabrera in San Nicolas Tolentino, Mexico on June 2, 2024. He was a candidate for the Green Party and was murdered on May 31, two days before the vote. Israel Fuguemann for NPR hide caption

These elections have also been historic for another grim reason: They have been one of the most violent. In the run up to these elections, more than 30 candidates were assassinated.

In the small town of San Nicolás Tolentino in Puebla state, voting went on as normal. But in the church nearby, family and friends gathered for the funeral of Jorge Luis Huerta Cabrera.

Huerta was running for the city council as a candidate for the Green party but he was gunned down on Friday. As people voted, Huerta’s casket was carried through the town. Church bells tolled and fireworks exploded in the midday sun.

“No one knows who is next," Huerta’s father, José Huerta Moctezuma, said.

His son, he said, always told him he was born for politics. “He was hardheaded,” he said. “He did what he wanted.”

In the end, he said, it was a rival party member who shot him to death.

“We need a reform that changes the social fabric, that brings peace and justice, because it’s not fair that we are forced to live this way.”

A group of family and friends surround the coffin of Jorge Huerta Cabrera, 31, who was a candidate for councilor for the Green Party, and was murdered on May 31, two days before the vote on Sunday.

A group of family and friends surround the coffin of Jorge Huerta Cabrera, 31, who was a candidate for councilor for the Green Party, and was murdered on May 31, two days before the vote on Sunday. Israel Fuguemann for NPR hide caption

Sheinbaum will have to tackle growing violence and a host of other pressing issues when she takes office on Oct. 1.

She has a significant mandate, with her Morena party and their two main allies winning a majority in Congress.

But she faces the largest budget deficit since the 1980s, growing power of the cartels and the perennially complicated relationship with the United States.

Sheinbaum reassured voters in her victory speech that she represented continuity and would “govern for everyone."

“Even though many Mexicans do not fully agree with our project, we will have to walk in peace and harmony to continue building a fair and more prosperous Mexico.”

  • election results

Mobile Menu Overlay

The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington, DC 20500

FACT SHEET: President   Biden Announces New Actions to Secure the   Border

New actions will bar migrants who cross our Southern border unlawfully from receiving asylum Biden taking action as Congressional Republicans put partisan politics ahead of national security, twice voting against toughest reforms in decades

Since his first day in office, President Biden has called on Congress to secure our border and address our broken immigration system. Over the past three years, while Congress has failed to act, the President has acted to secure our border. His Administration has deployed the most agents and officers ever to address the situation at the Southern border, seized record levels of illicit fentanyl at our ports of entry, and brought together world leaders on a framework to deal with changing migration patterns that are impacting the entire Western Hemisphere.  Earlier this year, the President and his team reached a historic bipartisan agreement with Senate Democrats and Republicans to deliver the most consequential reforms of America’s immigration laws in decades. This agreement would have added critical border and immigration personnel, invested in technology to catch illegal fentanyl, delivered sweeping reforms to the asylum system, and provided emergency authority for the President to shut down the border when the system is overwhelmed. But Republicans in Congress chose to put partisan politics ahead of our national security, twice voting against the toughest and fairest set of reforms in decades. President Biden believes we must secure our border. That is why today, he announced executive actions to bar migrants who cross our Southern border unlawfully from receiving asylum. These actions will be in effect when high levels of encounters at the Southern Border exceed our ability to deliver timely consequences, as is the case today. They will make it easier for immigration officers to remove those without a lawful basis to remain and reduce the burden on our Border Patrol agents. But we must be clear: this cannot achieve the same results as Congressional action, and it does not provide the critical personnel and funding needed to further secure our Southern border. Congress still must act. The Biden-Harris Administration’s executive actions will:   Bar Migrants Who Cross the Southern Border Unlawfully From Receiving Asylum

  • President Biden issued a proclamation under Immigration and Nationality Act sections 212(f) and 215(a) suspending entry of noncitizens who cross the Southern border into the United States unlawfully. This proclamation is accompanied by an interim final rule from the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security that restricts asylum for those noncitizens.
  • These actions will be in effect when the Southern border is overwhelmed, and they will make it easier for immigration officers to quickly remove individuals who do not have a legal basis to remain in the United States.
  • These actions are not permanent. They will be discontinued when the number of migrants who cross the border between ports of entry is low enough for America’s system to safely and effectively manage border operations. These actions also include similar humanitarian exceptions to those included in the bipartisan border agreement announced in the Senate, including those for unaccompanied children and victims of trafficking.

Recent Actions to secure our border and address our broken immigration system: Strengthening the Asylum Screening Process

  • The Department of Homeland Security published a proposed rule to ensure that migrants who pose a public safety or national security risk are removed as quickly in the process as possible rather than remaining in prolonged, costly detention prior to removal. This proposed rule will enhance security and deliver more timely consequences for those who do not have a legal basis to remain in the United States.

Announced new actions to more quickly resolve immigration cases

  • The Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security launched a Recent Arrivals docket to more quickly resolve a portion of immigration cases for migrants who attempt to cross between ports of entry at the Southern border in violation of our immigration laws.
  • Through this process, the Department of Justice will be able to hear these cases more quickly and the Department of Homeland Security will be able to more quickly remove individuals who do not have a legal basis to remain in the United States and grant protection to those with valid claims.
  • The bipartisan border agreement would have created and supported an even more efficient framework for issuing final decisions to all asylum seekers. This new process to reform our overwhelmed immigration system can only be created and funded by Congress.

Revoked visas of CEOs and government officials who profit from migrants coming to the U.S. unlawfully

  • The Department of State imposed visa restrictions on executives of several Colombian transportation companies who profit from smuggling migrants by sea. This action cracks down on companies that help facilitate unlawful entry into the United States, and sends a clear message that no one should profit from the exploitation of vulnerable migrants.
  • The State Department also imposed visa restrictions on over 250 members of the Nicaraguan government, non-governmental actors, and their immediate family members for their roles in supporting the Ortega-Murillo regime, which is selling transit visas to migrants from within and beyond the Western Hemisphere who ultimately make their way to the Southern border.
  • Previously, the State Department revoked visas of executives of charter airlines for similar actions.

Expanded Efforts to Dismantle Human Smuggling and Support Immigration Prosecutions

  • The Departments of State and Justice launched an “Anti-Smuggling Rewards” initiative designed to dismantle the leadership of human smuggling organizations that bring migrants through Central America and across the Southern U.S. border. The initiative will offer financial rewards for information leading to the identification, location, arrest, or conviction of those most responsible for significant human smuggling activities in the region.
  • The Department of Justice will seek new and increased penalties against human smugglers to properly account for the severity of their criminal conduct and the human misery that it causes.
  • The Department of Justice is also partnering with the Department of Homeland Security to direct additional prosecutors and support staff to increase immigration-related prosecutions in crucial border U.S. Attorney’s Offices. Efforts include deploying additional DHS Special Assistant United States Attorneys to different U.S. Attorneys’ offices, assigning support staff to critical U.S. Attorneys’ offices, including DOJ Attorneys to serve details in U.S. Attorneys’ Offices in several border districts, and partnering with federal agencies to identify additional resources to target these crimes.

Enhancing Immigration Enforcement

  • The Department of Homeland Security has surged agents to the Southern border and is referring a record number of people into expedited removal.
  • The Department of Homeland Security is operating more repatriation flights per week than ever before. Over the past year, DHS has removed or returned more than 750,000 people, more than in every fiscal year since 2010.
  • Working closely with partners throughout the region, the Biden-Harris Administration is identifying and collaborating on enforcement efforts designed to stop irregular migration before migrants reach our Southern border, expand investment and integration opportunities in the region to support those who may otherwise seek to migrate, and increase lawful pathways for migrants as an alternative to irregular migration.

Seizing Fentanyl at our Border

  • Border officials have seized more fentanyl at ports of entry in the last two years than the past five years combined, and the President has added 40 drug detection machines across points of entry to disrupt the fentanyl smuggling into the Homeland. The bipartisan border agreement would fund the installation of 100 additional cutting-edge inspection machines to help detect fentanyl at our Southern border ports of entry.
  • In close partnership with the Government of Mexico, the Department of Justice has extradited Nestor Isidro Perez Salaz, known as “El Nini,” from Mexico to the United States to face prosecution for his role in illicit fentanyl trafficking and human rights abuses. This is one of many examples of joint efforts with Mexico to tackle the fentanyl and synthetic drug epidemic that is killing so many people in our countries and globally, and to hold the drug trafficking organizations to account.

Stay Connected

We'll be in touch with the latest information on how President Biden and his administration are working for the American people, as well as ways you can get involved and help our country build back better.

Opt in to send and receive text messages from President Biden.

Ukraine-Russia war latest: Putin warns Russia could provide long-range weapons to attack West - and issues new nuclear threat

Vladimir Putin has warned he could supply weapons to other nations to strike Western countries in a meeting with international journalists. The Russian president also reaffirmed the country's position on using nuclear weapons. Follow live updates below.

Thursday 6 June 2024 16:51, UK

Pic: AP

  • Putin warns Russia could provide long-range weapons to attack West
  • Lavrov: French military instructors in Ukraine would be 'legitimate target'
  • Ivor Bennett:  Why is Lavrov in Africa?
  • Ukraine peace summit 'opens door to limited talks with Russia'
  • Big picture:  Everything you need to know about the war right now
  • Your questions answered: Are there any signs of an underground resistance in Russia?

That's it for our live coverage of the war in Ukraine for today.

You can scroll through the blog below to catch up on the day's developments.

By Nicole Johnston, Asia correspondent in Beijing

Putin's St Petersburg summit comes right out of the same playbook as China's President Xi Jinping.

So how do you get a read on China's geo-political thinking? One way is by wading through the dry and detailed pronouncements of its president, that's where the nuggets are.

In 2022, Xi said: "The world today is undergoing major changes, unseen in a century.

"The most important characteristic of the world is chaos and the trend is likely to continue."

In the world according to Xi, the time is right to reorder global governance with China at its pinnacle, where it belongs. His view is that the US anchored world order is breaking down.

Many countries in the global south are on board with China, chaffing at the dominance of the US led international system and ready to countenance a shake-up.

Russia is in lock step with China. 

Both countries need each other. Though Russia needs China more, for trade and diplomatic cover.

In this great power rivalry, the China-Russian axis could draw in other regional disrupters like Iran and North Korea.

If that happens it will be a formidable alliance based on hostility towards the US, sympathy for Russia, a deep fear of subversion and in the case of China, a relentless goal to unify with Taiwan.

Ukraine's main hydropower company says it has initiated proceedings to secure damages for Russia's destruction of the Kakhovka dam and power station a year ago today.

State-run Ukrhydroenergo said it estimates the damage to be around €2.5bn (£2.12bn).

The explosion of the dam on 6 June 2023 - which sent huge amounts of water across swathes of southern Ukraine and left thousands of people without drinking water - was met with global outcry and accusations of a war crime.

"The company's actions aim to compensate for the losses caused by the destruction of the Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant," Ukrhydroenergo said in a statement. 

"The company believes that initiating international arbitration process is the most promising way to compensate for the losses." 

The firm said Vladimir Putin, his government and other authorised bodies had been informed.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Ukrainian first lady Olena Zelenska have arrived in Normandy for an event to commemorate the 80th anniversary of D-Day.

French President Emmanuel Macron greeted the Ukrainian leader with a hug as he arrived, and the president was applauded as he went to take his place inside the event.

Several other political figures including UK defence minister Grant Shapps embraced Mr Zelenskyy as they greeted him.

Earlier, the Ukrainian president said he was "honoured" to participate in the anniversary event and said he would also take part in "important events and meetings aimed at strengthening our country".

"This event and day serve as a reminder of the courage and determination demonstrated in the pursuit of freedom and democracy," he said.

"Allies defended Europe's freedom then, and Ukrainians do so now. Unity prevailed then, and true unity can prevail today."

Earlier today we reported claims by Russian officials that Ukrainian drones hit an oil refinery and fuel depot in Russian border regions.

Rostov regional governor Vasily Golubev said an overnight drone attack struck the Novoshakhtinsk refinery, causing a fire to erupt. 

Meanwhile the governor for Belgorod, a Russian border region which has come under frequent Ukrainian fire during the war, said a drone hit an oil depot and caused an explosion.

No casualties were reported in either attack.

The trial of a US soldier accused of stealing is under way in Russia's far eastern city of Vladivostok.

Staff Sergeant Gordon Black flew to the city to see his girlfriend last month but was arrested after she accused him of stealing from her, US and Russian officials said.

The 34-year-old, who was on leave at the time, faces up to five years in prison if found guilty.

The US army said the soldier had not been given official clearance to travel to Russia's far east.

According to Russian news agency RIA, Sgt Black will give evidence during the trial and respond to the allegations against him.

He has been cooperating with authorities, the report said.

Following today's court session, Sgt Black's girlfriend, Alexandra Vashchuk, told reporters "it was a simple domestic dispute" during which the soldier "became aggressive and attacked" her.

"He then stole money from my wallet and I didn't give him permission to do it," she said.

Joe Biden has just addressed the crowds at the US national D-Day commemoration in Normandy, alongside French president Emmanuel Macron.

The US president began with a retelling of the devastation and evil unleashed on the world by Hitler and told the stories of some veterans in the audience.

"Every one of them knew the probability of dying was real, but they did it anyway," he said.

Mr Biden prayed that America never forgets the importance of alliances, noting NATO as the "greatest military alliance in the history of the world".

"Isolationism was not the answer 80 years ago, and it is not the answer today," he said.

"We know the dark forces that these heroes fought against 80 years ago, they never fade." 

He added: "The struggle between dictatorship and freedom is unending. Here in Europe we see one stark example. Ukraine has been invaded by a tyrant bent on domination."

Mr Biden continued: "Make no mistake, the autocrats of the world are watching closely.

"To surrender to bullies, to bow down to dictators, is simply unthinkable. Were we to do that, it means we would be forgetting what happened here on these hallowed beaches.

"History tells us that freedom is not free: If you want to know the price of freedom, come here to Normandy and look."

Russia has detained a French national on suspicion of collecting information on Russian military activity, investigators have said.

The man had visited the country repeatedly over several years, Russia's Investigative Committee said.

He's also said to have held meetings with Russian citizens.

The man has not been named.

The outcome of the US election this November is unlikely to have any impact on Washington's policy towards Russia, Vladimir Putin has said.

In comments cited by the Russian embassy in the UK, the Russian president said the Kremlin does "not think there will be any serious changes".

"You know perfectly well that the current developments in the US are political infighting; they are burning themselves out, their state and their political system," he said.

Democrat Joe Biden and Republican Donald Trump are their parties' presumptive nominees for the looming election.

Several polls are putting Trump ahead of Mr Biden, despite his recent criminal conviction.

Earlier this year, Mr Putin said he would prefer to see Mr Biden re-elected to the White House as he is "more experienced". 

But he has also enjoyed a previous good relationship with Trump, who has often praised his leadership. 

Hungary will attend a Ukraine peace summit in Switzerland next week despite Budapest strengthening its ties with Moscow.

Foreign minister Peter Szijjarto confirmed at an economic forum in St Petersburg that his country would be represented at the summit on 15 June.

The summit is aimed at building support among dozens of countries for a 10-point peace proposal from Volodymyr Zelenskyy, which includes Russian troops fully withdrawing from Ukrainian territory.

Russia has not been invited, and has branded it a waste of time.

Hungary, an EU and NATO member, has often pushed back against sending Western aid to Ukraine and has been critical of sanctions on Russia.

Vladimir Putin and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban also reaffirmed their commitment to bilateral ties during a meeting in October.

Be the first to get Breaking News

Install the Sky News app for free

in reported speech have changes to

Advertisement

Supported by

In Shift, Biden Issues Order Allowing Temporary Border Closure to Migrants

The move shows how drastically immigration politics have shifted in the United States. The American Civil Liberties Union said it planned to challenge the order in court.

  • Share full article

Biden Issues Order to Curb Immigration at Southern Border

President biden’s executive order prevents migrants from seeking asylum at the u.s.-mexico border when crossings surge..

I’ve come here today to do what the Republicans in Congress refuse to do: Take the necessary steps to secure our border. Today, I’m announcing actions to bar migrants who cross our southern border unlawfully from receiving asylum. Migrants will be restricted from receiving asylum at our southern border unless they seek it after entering through an established lawful process. And those who seek to come to the United States legally, for example, by making an appointment and coming to a port of entry, asylum will still be available to them, still available. To protect America as a land that welcomes immigrants, we must first secure the border and secure it now.

Video player loading

By Zolan Kanno-Youngs and Hamed Aleaziz

Zolan Kanno-Youngs and Hamed Aleaziz have reported on immigration politics and border policy during the Biden and Trump administrations.

President Biden issued an executive order on Tuesday that prevents migrants from seeking asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border when crossings surge, a dramatic election-year move to ease pressure on the immigration system and address a major concern among voters.

The measure is the most restrictive border policy instituted by Mr. Biden, or any other modern Democrat, and echoes an effort in 2018 by President Donald J. Trump to cut off migration that was blocked in federal court.

In remarks at the White House, Mr. Biden said he was forced to take executive action because Republicans had blocked bipartisan legislation that had some of the most significant border security restrictions Congress had considered in years.

“We must face a simple truth,” said the president, who was joined by a group of lawmakers and mayors from border communities. “To protect America as a land that welcomes immigrants, we must first secure the border and secure it now.”

Aware that the policy raised uncomfortable comparisons, Mr. Biden took pains to distinguish his actions from those of Mr. Trump. “We continue to work closely with our Mexican neighbors instead of attacking them,” Mr. Biden said. He said he would never refer to immigrants as “ poisoning the blood ” of the country, as Mr. Trump has done.

Still, the move shows how drastically the politics of immigration have shifted to the right in the United States. Polls suggest there is support in both parties for border measures once denounced by Democrats and championed by Mr. Trump as the number of people crossing into the country has reached record levels in recent years.

Mr. Biden’s executive action was set to go into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday, at which point border officers could return migrants across the border into Mexico or to their home countries within hours or days.

The American Civil Liberties Union said it planned to challenge the executive action in court.

“The administration has left us little choice but to sue,” said Lee Gelernt, a lawyer at the A.C.L.U, which led the charge against the Trump administration’s attempt to block asylum in 2018 and resulted in the policy being stopped by federal courts. “It was unlawful under Trump and is no less illegal now.”

Assuming it survives legal challenges, the policy kicks in once the seven-day average for daily illegal crossings hits 2,500 — a regular occurrence now. The border would reopen only after the figure drops to 1,500 for seven days in a row and stays that way for two weeks.

That is a significant shift in how asylum has worked for years.

Typically, migrants who cross illegally and claim asylum are released into the United States to wait for court appearances, where they can plead their cases. But a huge backlog means those cases can take years to come up.

The new system is designed to deter those illegal crossings.

There would be limited exceptions to the restrictions announced Tuesday, including for minors who cross the border alone, victims of human trafficking and those who use a Customs and Border Protection app to schedule an appointment with a border officer to request asylum.

But for the most part, the order suspends longtime guarantees that give anyone who steps onto U.S. soil the right to seek a safe haven.

The executive action mirrors the legislation that Republicans blocked in February, saying it was not strong enough. Many of them, egged on by Mr. Trump, were loath to give Mr. Biden a legislative victory in an election year.

“Donald Trump begged them to vote ‘no’ because he was worried that more border enforcement would hurt him politically,” Andrew Bates, a White House spokesman, said in a statement on Tuesday. He added: “The American people want bipartisan solutions to border security — not cynical politics.”

Immigration advocates and some progressive Democrats have expressed concern that Mr. Biden was abandoning his promise to rebuild the asylum system.

“By reviving Trump’s asylum ban, President Biden has undermined American values and abandoned our nation’s obligations to provide people fleeing persecution, violence, and authoritarianism with an opportunity to seek refuge in the U.S.,” said Senator Alex Padilla, Democrat of California.

Mr. Biden said that those who believe his latest restrictions are too strict should be “patient.” He said in the coming weeks he would speak about “how we can make our immigration system more fair and more just.”

Tuesday’s decision is a stark turnaround for Mr. Biden, who came into office attacking Mr. Trump for his efforts to restrict asylum. During a 2019 debate, Mr. Biden, then a candidate running against Mr. Trump for the first time, excoriated his rival’s policies.

“This is the first president in the history of the United States of America that anybody seeking asylum has to do it in another country,” Mr. Biden said at the time.

Mr. Trump tried several times to close the U.S. border to asylum seekers, succeeding only in 2020 when he used a Covid-era emergency rule to seal the border to most migrants.

Immigration has proved to be a huge political vulnerability for Mr. Biden, reaching a crisis in December, when about 10,000 people a day were making their way into the United States.

Biden administration officials, panicked over those numbers, pressed Mexico to do more to curb migration. Mexican officials have since used charter flights and buses to move migrants deeper south and away from the United States.

The number of people crossing has plunged since then, though the numbers are still historically high. On Sunday, more than 3,500 people crossed without authorization, in line with the trends of recent weeks, according to a person with knowledge of the data.

Even with the executive order in place, migrants could still apply for other protections designed for those who can prove they will be tortured in their home country. But that screening has a much higher bar than asylum and as a result, administration officials said they do not expect many migrants to be screened into the United States.

People who cross illegally and do not qualify for those other protections would be subject to a five-year prohibition on entering the United States.

White House officials believe the order provides Mr. Biden an opportunity to take Republicans to task for dooming the bipartisan bill. That legislation also would have provided billions to the Homeland Security Department for more border officers and immigration judges.

Mr. Biden cannot provide those resources through executive action. White House officials for weeks said they preferred legislation over presidential proclamation because it would be more lasting and less exposed to a court challenge.

The order also comes with some political risks. Republicans have questioned why Mr. Biden did not take unilateral action at the border sooner. In January, he told reporters that he had “done all I can do” at the border and that he needed help from Congress.

“It’s all about show, because he knows we have a debate coming up in three weeks,” Mr. Trump said Tuesday on social media.

As Mr. Biden considered whether to take executive action in recent months, his administration has taken smaller steps to try to control those backlogs.

In May, the administration proposed a rule change that would allow officers to quickly identify people who are ineligible for asylum, such as those who have been convicted of serious crimes. Currently, they may be allowed to enter the country and wait months, or often years, for asylum proceedings. The proposal must go through a 30-day public comment period.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services also issued a new policy in May instructing asylum officers to consider whether applicants could find refuge in their own countries before coming to the United States.

Zolan Kanno-Youngs is a White House correspondent, covering President Biden and his administration. More about Zolan Kanno-Youngs

Hamed Aleaziz covers the Department of Homeland Security and immigration policy. More about Hamed Aleaziz

Featured Topics

Featured series.

A series of random questions answered by Harvard experts.

Explore the Gazette

Read the latest.

Harvard Alumni Day Speaker Courtney B. Vance at the podium.

‘The only way through is with’

John Lowry sitting in a boat on the water.

Why row from Boston to London? Because it’s there.

Eliot House.

Next up for House renewal: Eliot

Headshots of Alison Simmons and Noah Feldman.

Alison Simmons and Noah Feldman.

Credits: Harvard Staff Photo; Mark Dunn

When should Harvard speak out?

Institutional Voice Working Group provides a roadmap in new report

Jessica McCann

Harvard Correspondent

In April, interim President Alan M. Garber and interim Provost John F. Manning  announced  two University-wide initiati v es to explore how best to cultivate and reinforce open inquiry, constructive dialogue, and academic freedom on campus. The first, the Open Inquiry and Constructive Dialogue Working Group, is examining how to nurture and support engagement across differing viewpoints in Harvard’s teaching, learning, and dialogue. The second, the Institutional Voice Working Group, has taken up the more specific question of whether and when Harvard as a University should speak on matters of social and political significance and who should be authorized to speak for the institution as a whole. On Tuesday, Garber, Manning, and the deans of Harvard’s Schools announced that they had accepted the working group’s proposed statement of principles.

The Institutional Voice Working Group began its work by conducting a broad review of the types of public statements that Harvard and peer institutions have made in recent years. It also invited community feedback. The group has engaged in extensive outreach to members of the Harvard community, conducting a survey, soliciting input via email, and hosting more than 30 virtual and in-person listening sessions. Discussions covered the criteria by which the University and its various units should make official statements about public matters, the rationale behind these criteria, and the consequences that might arise for Harvard and its community when they do so.

The Gazette spoke with co-chairs Noah Feldman and Alison Simmons about the working group’s report . Feldman is the Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and chair of Harvard’s Society of Fellows. Simmons is the Samuel H. Wolcott Professor of Philosophy and faculty co-director, Embedded EthiCS, in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. The interview has been edited for clarity and length.

Can you summarize the report and what it seeks to do?

Simmons: Our charge was to answer the question: When, if at all, should the University make official statements about global events, and why/why not? We leaned into the why/why not. When the University speaks on an event or issue, why? What makes speaking about that event appropriate? Recognizing that not speaking about an event or issue is itself a speech act that will be “heard,” a compelling reason needs to be given for that too. We aimed to produce a guiding document that sets out the principles underlying the decision whether or not to issue a formal statement.

Feldman: The main point of the report is that the University’s leadership can and should speak out on anything relevant to the core function of the University, which is creating an environment suitable for free, open inquiry, teaching, and research. That environment is threatened these days, and we need to defend it. At the same time, the University as an institution should not make official statements on issues outside its core function. Harvard isn’t a government. It shouldn’t have a foreign policy or a domestic policy.

In the end, we believe this approach is actually more inclusive to the whole community. We heard loud and clear from many stakeholders that if we speak out some of the time on some global or national issues, then many people feel we are ignoring other issues. And on some issues, our community is divided or the world is divided in such a way that we are going to drive controversy no matter what we say.

“Given the broad consensus we heard, we hope these principles will serve the University’s diverse community well for many years to come.” Alison Simmons

The report describes the University’s purpose as “the pursuit of truth.” Why is this the core principle that should inform the use of Harvard’s institutional voice?

Feldman: Here at Harvard, we hold firmly to our ideal of Veritas. Our charge was to think about how institutional statements affect the carrying out of this purpose. As members of a university, we pursue truth through inquiry, debate, research, and a range of other methods. Our expertise lies in our scholarship. As an institution, Harvard doesn’t add to the truth by announcing a single official position on what is true in science or politics or whatever. In fact, it undermines our mission if the University makes official declarations about matters outside its core function.

Simmons: Pursuing truth looks different in different fields of study. Some of us think we are after understanding (a text, an artwork, a religious tradition). Some of us think of ourselves as producing knowledge (scientific, social, medical, legal). Some of us think we are preserving (cultural forms, objects, ideas). And methodologies vary widely across academic disciplines and Harvard’s Schools. So, by “truth” we mean to cast a wide net.

If what we do in the University is to pursue truth — and to pursue it by reasoned argument and debate, controlled experiment, and so on — then the job of the University as an institution is to create an environment in which we can have a healthy, productive, and free exchange of ideas and argument among diverse points of view on issues of science, society, values, culture, etc. We make progress by encountering friction with the things we take to be obviously true now, so long as the friction comes from a desire to get it right and not to shut down argument. We all have to be open to being challenged and to changing our minds in the face of new evidence. And we all have to engage people who think differently from us with curiosity and openness.

Feldman: One comment from a focus group with students that stands out in my mind is, “Everyone gets the emails and then everyone feels bad.” We’ve come to understand just how unsatisfactory statements truly are and how far they stray from our core function as an institution of higher learning. Leadership cares deeply for the community and they want to respond to the community’s desire for solutions to difficult social and political events playing out all over the world — but statements can’t provide this. Even expressions of empathy, when sent to such a broad community, can fall flat. What we recommend in our report is a return to what a university does best — teaching, research, learning, and service as an answer to these events.

In this report, who is the “we” when you say “institutional voice”?

Feldman: Our report applies to anyone authorized to speak on behalf of the University officially (the president, provost, deans, and other administrative leaders). Individual faculty and students have academic freedom. But they don’t speak on behalf of the whole University. That needs to be understood by the whole world.

Simmons: It is the individual community members who have academic freedom to pursue the questions they find important and interesting, to develop expertise in their chosen field, to teach the material they think is important, and to speak out on issues they find compelling. The University does not tell us what to say or think. And when we speak, we do not speak for the University. The University (i.e., its leadership) must use its voice to protect and promote the ability of all its community members to do precisely those things.

What did you hear in the listening sessions and from those who submitted thoughts and ideas through the survey or via email? How did it inform the report?

Simmons: One thing I learned is just how much people care about this institution. They really want Harvard to be the best place it can be. In that respect, I felt we were all trying to figure out how to answer this question together. We also heard a lot from people who feel pressure to “speak for Harvard” when they do not want to (because they recognize they cannot speak for everyone).

Feldman: We also heard a lot about how institutional statements and statements by individuals are taken up by the media, including social media. In an age of social media, it is easy for the public to think that anyone who posts wearing a crimson sweatshirt speaks “for” Harvard. They don’t! And we need to make that clear.

Given that Harvard is often the subject of intense public interest , some community members have called for the University to adopt a policy of institutional neutrality . This would be si milar to the University of Chicago’s policy, as outlined in a document known as the Kalven Report , which calls for the neutrality of the university “out of respect for free inquiry and the obligation to cherish a diversity of viewpoints.” Does your report call for institutional neutrality?

Feldman: Our report has some meaningful overlap with the Kalven Report. A key difference between the Kalven Report and ours is that we’re saying that, as an institution with values, we have a responsibility to promote our core function as an educational institution and defend ourselves against forces that seek to undermine our academic values. In that sense, we aren’t neutral, and we can’t be. Another big difference is our reason for restraint, which is based on speaking where we are experts and not speaking where the University as an institution isn’t expert.

Is the report a response to the many challenges Harvard and other higher ed institutions have faced since Oct. 7?

Simmons: The University has been making statements about all sorts of things for a long time. Conversations about whether it should be making so many statements have also been taking place for a long time. But the reality in which the University operates has changed over the past 10 years or so in ways that make it pressing to form a policy on the “to speak or not to speak” question.

First, news travels rapidly and widely through social media. When the University issues a statement, it reaches the entire world (intact or in distorted pieces) in seconds. (By contrast, when Derek Bok was president from 1971 to 1991, he wrote up quite long statements that were physically slid under the doors of faculty and students!) What’s more, anyone with a social media account can appear to the public to speak for Harvard. And that makes it hard for people outside the University to know what is and what is not an “official” Harvard statement. There’s just a lot less control over University communications.

Second, we now live in a world of extreme political polarization. And that means both that people tend to react to University statements (again, intact or distorted) in a polarized way, and also put pressure on the University to speak or not speak in polarized ways.

These two changes were certainly on display in the wake of Oct. 7. But they have been in place for quite some time. And the combination of these two new realities has made it important to form a policy.

How will this work dovetail with the work of the Open Inquiry and Constructive Dialogue Working Group?

Feldman: We were fortunate that we were asked for a clear deliverable — a set of principles for when the University should and should not issue official statements. The Open Inquiry Working Group has been asked to address a broader and more complex set of issues about how we can maintain and improve the work we do as a University. The two are connected, though. Both are concerned with how we achieve the core purpose we share.

Simmons: I think that our report might help to provide a framework and some core principles that can support the important work of the Open Inquiry and Constructive Dialogue Working Group. They are already thinking hard about how to promote constructive dialogue in the classroom, in the dining hall, and in the Houses — i.e., on the ground. I think they will help us learn how best to encourage our students to learn from each other through constructive disagreement, genuine curiosity, intellectual give and take, and a desire to grow.

We think our proposal can support that and we take it as a reminder to all of us that the University must commit itself to the value of creating an environment that facilitates open inquiry, and to acknowledge that the University itself must positively promote it and take great care not to jeopardize it, even if only inadvertently.

What’s next? How does the University translate these principles into action?

Simmons : For one, the community will need some time to get used to the idea that the University will not be speaking on a great number of things.

Feldman: Absolutely. With the University’s decision to take up these principles, there will need to be a significant culture shift as people realize, inside Harvard and outside, that the University has genuinely adopted a “say less” policy.

Simmons: We have come to expect those emails from the president’s office (and then the deans’ offices and then other School-based offices) when something urgent happens in the world. It will be startling, and possibly unsettling for a while, not to get them. University leadership will have to remind us all why it is not making as many statements as it used to. Another thing University leadership will have to do is figure out how to translate our recommendation into concrete policy and how to operationalize it.

Our working group set out to provide principles for a strong foundation for the University and any other university that might find these principles valuable. We received thoughtful input from more than 1,000 people across the University. Given the broad consensus we heard, we hope these principles will serve the University’s diverse community well for many years to come.

Feldman: Our goal is for the individual, expert voices of the University to be heard loud and clear. When the University focuses its institutional voice on its core function — and only on its core function — that will highlight the extraordinary work the members of the University do. When the University flourishes, we all can make more valuable contributions to knowledge and to the world.

Share this article

You might like.

Harvard Alumni Day speakers highlight importance of connection to University community amid times of global discord

John Lowry sitting in a boat on the water.

Spaulding Rehabilitation physiatrist, team taking new route, aim to set records 

Eliot House.

Building refresh aims to boost accessibility, preserve historic character

Women who follow Mediterranean diet live longer

Large study shows benefits against cancer, cardiovascular mortality, also identifies likely biological drivers of better health

Harvard-led study IDs statin that may block pathway to some cancers

Cholesterol-lowering drug suppresses chronic inflammation that creates dangerous cascade

IMAGES

  1. Reported speech

    in reported speech have changes to

  2. Reported Speech: How to Use Reported Speech

    in reported speech have changes to

  3. The Reported Speech (part 2) :Reporting Questions. Special Corona virus animated lesson

    in reported speech have changes to

  4. Indirect speech

    in reported speech have changes to

  5. Reported Speech Rules

    in reported speech have changes to

  6. Reported Speech CHANGES GUIDE gramm…: English ESL worksheets pdf & doc

    in reported speech have changes to

VIDEO

  1. Reported Speech notes for class 10th📝📚📖#revision

  2. Reported Speech شرح مفصل لدرس القواعد

  3. Reporting Verbs| Reported Speech 2 PUC English Grammar 2023|

  4. REPORTED SPEECH

  5. Reported Speech هنتكلم عن حاجة حرام

  6. Reported Speech Part 2 (Questions): شرح درس الخطاب الغير المباشر لتلاميذ الثانية باك 2024

COMMENTS

  1. What is Reported Speech and How to Use It? with Examples

    Direct speech: "I have finished my work." Reported speech: She said she had finished her work. Past simple in direct speech changes to past perfect in reported speech. For example: Direct speech: "I visited my grandparents last weekend." Reported speech: She said she had visited her grandparents the previous weekend. Will in direct ...

  2. Reported Speech

    Time Expressions with Reported Speech Sometimes when we change direct speech into reported speech we have to change time expressions too. We don't always have to do this, however. It depends on when we heard the direct speech and when we say the reported speech. For example: It's Monday. Julie says "I'm leaving today".

  3. Reported Speech: Important Grammar Rules and Examples • 7ESL

    Reported speech: He asked if he would see me later. In the direct speech example you can see the modal verb 'will' being used to ask a question. Notice how in reported speech the modal verb 'will' and the reporting verb 'ask' are both written in the past tense. So, 'will' becomes 'would' and 'ask' becomes 'asked'.

  4. Reported speech

    Reported speech - English Grammar Today - a reference to written and spoken English grammar and usage - Cambridge Dictionary

  5. Reported Speech

    To change an imperative sentence into a reported indirect sentence, use to for imperative and not to for negative sentences. Never use the word that in your indirect speech. Another rule is to remove the word please. Instead, say request or say. For example: "Please don't interrupt the event," said the host.

  6. Tense changes in reported speech

    In indirect speech, the structure of the reported clause depends on whether the speaker is reporting a statement, a question or a command. Normally, the tense in reported speech is one tense back in time from the tense in direct speech: She said, "I am tired." = She said that she was tired. Phrase in Direct Speech. Equivalent in Reported Speech.

  7. Reported speech

    Reported speech. Daisy has just had an interview for a summer job. Instructions. 0:00 / 2:20. 720p. Transcript. We use reported speech when we want to tell someone what someone said. We usually use a reporting verb (e.g. say, tell, ask, etc.) and then change the tense of what was actually said in direct speech.

  8. Reported Speech Tenses Chart: How to convert tenses

    Below is a reported speech tense change chart with the rules for backshifting for each tense and for modal verbs. You will see reported speech does not go back a tense if it is already in the past perfect (there is no further back it can go), and some modal verbs also do not change. If you are tested on this, though, these are the changes you ...

  9. Reported Speech

    Reported Speech: In this article, you will be introduced to reported speech, its meaning and definition, how and when to use it. You can also check out the examples given for a much better understanding of reported speech. ... Transform the following sentences into reported speech by making the necessary changes. 1. Rachel said, "I have an ...

  10. Reported Speech: Rules, Examples, Exceptions

    When we use reported speech, we often change the verb tense backwards in time. This can be called "backshift.". Here are some examples in different verb tenses: "I want to go home.". She said she wanted to go home. "I 'm reading a good book.". She said she was reading a good book. "I ate pasta for dinner last night.".

  11. Reported Speech in English Grammar

    Introduction. In English grammar, we use reported speech to say what another person has said. We can use their exact words with quotation marks, this is known as direct speech, or we can use indirect speech.In indirect speech, we change the tense and pronouns to show that some time has passed.Indirect speech is often introduced by a reporting verb or phrase such as ones below.

  12. Time and Place in Reported Speech

    Time and Place in Reported Speech. When we report something, we may need to make changes to: time (now, tomorrow) place (here, this room) direct speech. reported speech. She said, "I saw Mary yesterday." She said she had seen Mary the day before. He said: "My mother is here."

  13. 100 Reported Speech Examples: How To Change Direct Speech ...

    Direct: "I will help you," she promised. Reported: She promised that she would help me. Direct: "You should study harder," he advised. Reported: He advised that I should study harder. Direct: "I didn't take your book," he denied. Reported: He denied taking my book. Direct: "Let's go to the cinema," she suggested.

  14. Changing time and place in reported speech| reported speech| English EFL

    Place. If we are in the same place when we report something, then we do not need to make any changes to place words. But if we are in a different place when we report something, then we need to change the place words. Look at these example sentences: He said: "It is cold in here ." → He said that it was cold in there.

  15. PDF Unit 12A Grammar: Reported Speech(1

    3.When we talk about places, if the direct speech statement includes here, it changes to there in the reported version: here there "Have you been here before," asked Kevin. *Kevin asked if I had been there before. "They make the best pizza here," said Brandon. Brandon said (that) they made the best pizza

  16. Reported Speech

    Rewrite the demands/requests in indirect speech. The passenger requested the taxi driver, "Stop the car.". → The passenger requested the taxi driver . to + same wording as in direct speech. The mother told her son, "Don't be so loud.". → The mother told her son . not to + same wording as in direct speech, but remove don't.

  17. Conditionals and Reported Speech

    Second conditional in reported speech. The above tense and modal shifting rules apply to the second conditional too. If the condition is still relevant, no changes occur. However, if it's outdated, the past simple becomes the past perfect, and would becomes would + have + past participle. Sofia: If I had more money, I would buy a new car.

  18. Reported Speech CHANGES GUIDE

    Reported Speech CHANGES GUIDE. Chadelel. 10645. 124. 93. 0. 1/1. Let's do English ESL grammar guide. Reported Speech CHANGES GUIDE - This is a guide for your students in order to know how they have to change the pronouns, exp….

  19. Reported speech: indirect speech

    Reported speech: indirect speech - English Grammar Today - a reference to written and spoken English grammar and usage - Cambridge Dictionary

  20. Changes of Pronouns in Reported Speech: Rules & Examples

    Rule #1. First person pronoun in direct speech (i.e. I, we) is changed according to the pronoun of reporting verb if pronoun in reporting verb is third person pronoun (i.e. he, she) For example: Direct speech: He said, " I don't want to shock people ". Reported speech: He said that he didn't want to shock people.

  21. PolitiFact

    Neama Rahmani, a former prosecutor who co-founded the firm West Coast Trial Lawyers, said, "The verdict has to be unanimous, but the jurors don't have to agree on the other crime that the false ...

  22. Live updates: D-Day 80th anniversary in Normandy, Biden, Macron

    France's President Emmanuel Macron delivers a speech during the International commemorative ceremony at Omaha Beach marking the 80th anniversary of the World War II "D-Day" Allied landings in ...

  23. Biden signs executive action drastically tightening border

    Facing mounting political pressure over the migrant influx at the U.S. southern border, President Joe Biden on Tuesday signed an executive order that will temporarily shut down asylum requests ...

  24. Climate change: Planet endures 12 straight months of ...

    Guterres' speech also referenced new data released by the World Meteorological Organization, which found a nearly 86% chance that at least one of the years between 2024 and 2028 will break the ...

  25. Claudia Sheinbaum makes history elected as Mexico's first female ...

    Claudia Sheimbaum celebrating during her speech in Mexico City on June 3, 2024. ... The 61-year-old climate scientist was part of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change team ...

  26. FACT SHEET: President Biden Announces New Actions to Secure the Border

    Border officials have seized more fentanyl at ports of entry in the last two years than the past five years combined, and the President has added 40 drug detection machines across points of entry ...

  27. UNC System compelled speech ban affects diversity efforts

    The changes at UNC and N.C. State come after the Board of Governors in February approved a change to the UNC Policy Manual that prohibits the state's public universities from asking or requiring ...

  28. Ukraine-Russia war latest: Putin warns Russia could provide long-range

    Unfortunately we have been unable to verify if you have consented to cookies. To view this content you can use the button below to allow cookies for this session only.

  29. Biden Issues Executive Order to Temporarily Close Border to Migrants

    Zolan Kanno-Youngs and Hamed Aleaziz have reported on immigration politics and border policy during the Biden and Trump administrations. June 4, 2024 Leer en español

  30. When should Harvard speak out?

    Recognizing that not speaking about an event or issue is itself a speech act that will be "heard," a compelling reason needs to be given for that too. We aimed to produce a guiding document that sets out the principles underlying the decision whether or not to issue a formal statement. ... These two changes were certainly on display in the ...