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Q&A: The order of presidential succession

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is second in line to succeed the president, after Joe Biden.

Associated Press

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is second in line to succeed the president, after Joe Biden.

Order of presidential succession

I realize that, if necessary, the vice president would succeed the president. What is the rest of the line of succession?

Here's the line of succession, with the name of the person currently in the position, if anything were to happen to President Barack Obama:

1. Vice president (Joe Biden)

2. Speaker of the House (Nancy Pelosi)

3. Senate president pro temore (Robert Byrd)

4. Secretary of State (Hillary Clinton)

5. Secretary of the Treasury (Tim Geithner)

6. Secretary of Defense (Robert Gates)

7. Attorney general (Eric Holder)

8. Secretary of the Interior (Ken Salazar)

9. Secretary of Agriculture (Tom Vilsack)

10. Secretary of Commerce (Gary Locke)

11. Secretary of Labor (Hilda Solis)

12. Secretary of Health and Human Services (Kathleen Sebelius)

13. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (Shaun Donovan)

14. Secretary of Transportation (Ray LaHood)

15. Secretary of Energy (Steven Chu)

16. Secretary of Education (Arne Duncan)

17. Secretary of Veterans Affairs (Eric Shinseki)

18. Secretary of Homeland Security (Janet Napolitano)

All are Democrats except Gates and LaHood (Republicans) and Chu and Shinseki (Independents).

FX continues Glenn Close series

I would like to know if the Glenn Close series, Damages, is going to return for a third season and if so, when.

FX ordered second and third seasons of the drama after the success of the first. Two have aired so far, and a third is due in January.

Close, by the way, recently won her second Emmy for playing Patty Hewes on the series, and her third Emmy total in seven nominations. She also won for starring in the TV movie Serving in Silence: The Margarethe Cammermeyer Story.

Measuring air speed in knots

Why are knots, a seemingly ancient form of measurement, used by airplanes?

As best as we can tell, knots are used in both nautical and aviation because the length of a nautical mile is almost the same as a minute of latitude. So the distance in nautical miles on a navigational chart is easily measured by the latitude lines on the side of the chart. One knot equals one nautical mile per hour.

'Closer' actor's famous parents

Is the girl playing Charlie, Brenda's niece on The Closer, Kyra Sedgwick's daughter? I wish the season lasted longer.

Actually, the name is Sosie Bacon. And, yes, she is the daughter of star Kyra Sedgwick with her actor husband, Kevin Bacon. As for the short season, The Closer will have some new episodes in December.

Q&A: The order of presidential succession 10/11/09 [Last modified: Sunday, October 11, 2009 4:30am]
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