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The “designated survivor” for tonight’s State of the Union is Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.
For security reasons, one member of the president’s cabinet is chosen each year to skip the speech at the U.S. Capitol in case of a national security crisis.
Foxx, previously the mayor of Charlotte, NC, has served as Transportation Secretary since July 2013.
Last year, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz was the ‘designated survivor.’
Since 2003, two members of each house of Congress have also been absent from the State of the Union speech in case of a security event.