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Government Executive Editor in Chief Tom Shoop, along with other editors and staff correspondents, look at the federal bureaucracy from the outside in.

State of the Union Highlights: Bureaucracy, Big Government and Benefits

President Obama at his 2010 State of the Union address. President Obama at his 2010 State of the Union address. The White House

Live updates from President Obama's State of the Union address, highlighting his statements about government management and federal employees. 

10:09 p.m. The State of the Union, in one word: "strong." And that's a wrap. 

10:02 p.m. A challenge to all Americans on working to get the government they want: "It will depend on you. That’s what’s meant by a government of, by, and for the people."

9:57 p.m. The big issue: Big government. “Our founders distributed power between states and branches of government, and expected us to argue, just as they did, over the size and shape of government, over commerce and foreign relations, over the meaning of liberty and the imperatives of security.”

9:49 p.m. On the Ebola response: "Our military, our doctors, and our development workers set up the platform that allowed other countries to join us in stamping out that epidemic."

9:45 p.m. For a speech that wasn't supposed to focus on a "list of proposals for the year ahead," it sure has a lot of proposals for the year ahead. 

9:39 p.m. It wouldn't be a State of the Union without praise for the military: "Our troops are the finest fighting force in the history of the world. No nation attacks us directly or our allies because they know that’s the path to ruin."

9:34 p.m. Guys, Joe Biden’s going to cure cancer: “Last year, Vice President Biden said that with a new moonshot, America can cure cancer. Last month, he worked with this Congress to give scientists at the National Institutes of Health the strongest resources they’ve had in over a decade. Tonight, I’m announcing a new national effort to get it done. And because he’s gone to the mat for all of us, on so many issues over the past forty years, I’m putting Joe in charge of Mission Control.”

9:32 p.m. The list of those who embody the “spirit of discovery” includes three federal employees: Grace Hopper, Katherine Johnson and Sally Ride.

9:31 p.m. A NASA shoutout (and a shot at climate change deniers): “Sixty years ago, when the Russians beat us into space, we didn’t deny Sputnik was up there. We didn’t argue about the science, or shrink our research and development budget. We built a space program almost overnight, and twelve years later, we were walking on the moon.”

9:29 p.m. Bold opposition to bureaucracy: "I believe there are outdated regulations that need to be changed, and there’s red tape that needs to be cut."

9:25 p.m. “It’s not much of a stretch to say that some of the only people in America who are going to work the same job, in the same place, with a health and retirement package, for 30 years, are sitting in this chamber.” (And--cough, cough--a lot of career federal employees, too.)

9:16 p.m. Rare mention of benefits for government employees (of the military variety): the American spirit is “how we reformed our health care system, and reinvented our energy sector; how we delivered more care and benefits to our troops coming home and our veterans…”

9:12 p.m. “Tonight, I want to go easy on the traditional list of proposals for the year ahead.” We'll see...

9:05 p.m. Showtime. Or at least time for the president to kiss and shake hands all the way to the podium.

9:02 p.m. It goes without saying that Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz once again walks away with the "best hair" prize among Cabinet members. 

8:31 p.m. Hatch may be taking in the speech from home, but according to a White House press pool report, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson has been designated by the administration to stay away from the speech. 

6:19 p.m. ET The Guardian reports that this year's "designated survivor," the person told to stay away from the Capitol during the speech to take over as president in the event of catastrophe, is an unusual choice: Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah. As president pro tempore of the Senate, Hatch is third in line for the presidency. Usually, the official designated to sit out the speech is a low-level Cabinet member

Tom Shoop is vice president and editor in chief at Government Executive Media Group, where he oversees both print and online editorial operations. He started as associate editor of Government Executive magazine in 1989; launched the company’s flagship website, GovExec.com, in 1996; and was named editor in chief in 2007.

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