As the rest of the country watched President Biden's first State of the Union address Tuesday night, one of our friends from neighboring Rhode Island was probably experiencing one of the strangest nights of her life.

Former Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo, now the Commerce Secretary for the United States of America and 10th in line to succeed the president, was named designated survivor for last night's State of the Union address.

Now, I'm no expert, but I have seen Designated Survivor on Netflix. For those of you who have not seen the show, it is sort of an off-brand version of House of Cards.  We get a front-row seat to how the Constitution plays itself out in some pretty crazy scenarios.

Playing the real-life role of Keifer Sutherland last night was Raimondo. 

While her name is relatively familiar to a decent amount of people here on the SouthCoast and, of course, in Rhode Island, I would say more than 99% of the country has no idea who fills the role of commerce secretary. They wouldn't know if Gina Raimondo or Gina Davis was commerce secretary. Yet, there she was last night, tucked away in a super-secret and secure location, preparing herself to respond to the unthinkable.

With all the members of Congress grouped together with the president and the vice president, if there was a devastating attack last night on the Capitol, she would instantly become acting president. It is a plan that has been in place since the 1960s.

Can you appreciate how strange Raimondo's night must have been? 

It's not like things are quiet and peaceful right now in the world. Imagine the anxiety that must have been in her stomach as she watched the speech on a television in the safe room. If a catastrophe became a reality, the designated survivor would have to prop back up the United States government and immediately deal with whoever conducted the attack.

Thankfully, even though other parts of the world are operating in chaos, last night's State of the Union address was uneventful. Our former neighbor, Raimondo, can remain a relative unknown.

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