'Designated Successor' Gates Will Skip Inauguration
Pentagon boss would take over in worst case
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 19, 2009 12:33 PM CST
Defense Secretary Robert Gates after being introduced by Barack Obama.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Secretary of Defense Robert Gates will sit out the inauguration at a secure location and be available to take over the government in case of disaster, CBS reports. The White House designated Gates with the approval of the incoming administration, which he will serve in the same post. The move is in keeping with tradition of certain officials remaining away from state events where the leadership is concentrated.