The other night I was wondering who was third in line for the presidency but didn’t get around to looking it up till today. Here’s the current succession list. An interesting footnote is they are thinking about changing it so that Homeland Security is 8th, before the Secretary of Agriculture.
An About.com article on presidential succession was obviously written awhile back and doesn’t have Homeland Security in it. It is also interesting that Strom Thrumond was #3 at the time.
Another interesting point in this article talks about Tom Clancey’s Executive Orders, in which all of the government is killed by a plane crashing into the capital and Jack Ryan becomes president. The author points out the only time this could happen would be during a State of the Union address and the government has a plan. One member of the cabinet doesn’t attend that meeting.
The author also says in Clancey’s book, “person-from-the-street” is made president. Which isn’t really true. Jack Ryan was National Security Advisor, which is the position Condoleezza Rice currently holds. And the reason there was a joint meeting in the book was to announce Ryan being appointed VP because the VP had turned in his resignation. So at the time he was sworn in he wasn’t really in line, but he was suppose to be. They could have sworn him in as VP and then made him President.