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President Barack Obama delivers the 2011 State of the Union Address tonight, beginning at 9 pm Eastern Time.

Tonight, President Obama will give the 2011 State of the Union and reports indicate that several heroes from the Tucson shootings will join First Lady Michelle Obama. (See Michelle Obama’s State of the Union Guest List)

They are to include Daniel Hernandez, the Congressional Intern who ran toward the gunfire, propped up Rep. Gabrielle Gifffords, and used grocery store smocks to dress wounds before the ambulances arrived. He is credited with keeping her alive during those critical moments after the attack.

One of Gabrielle Giffords‘ doctors will be there–a surgeon who operated on her.

And, the family of Christina Taylor Green, the 9-year-old-girl who was shot and killed will also be in the gallery. Christina Green was at the rally to learn more about her government.

Other heroes from our military will be recognized as well during the 2011 State of the Union.

Arizona lawmakers are planning to save a seat for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords at tonight’s State of the Union also.

If you’ve ever watched a State of the Union address before, you know that it is common for Presidents to invite special visitors and praise them for particularly noteworthy or heroic actions. Where did this tradition begin?

It all started with Ronald Reagan, who in his 1982 State of the Union Address invited Lenny Skutnik, a low-level employee at the Congressional Budget Office, to be recognized for his heroic acts when a plane crashed into the Potomac River. The video is below:

In the wake of the Tucson shootings, many have called for more civility in our political discourse, particularly after Sarah Palin’s “blood libel” remark. So one thing to watch for is will Obama’s State of the Union reflect that “new civility”–particularly now that government is divided?

Obama’s 2011 State of the Union address is expected to be about jobs. And many will be looking for President Obama to use the State of the Union to articulate policies that both Republicans and Democrats can back.

What are you hoping to hear tonight? President Obama released a video preview on YouTube of what he plans to discuss:

States of the Union are usually long on promises and short on delivery, but let’s say you could put one thought or idea into the mouth of President Obama tonight….what would it be? Or maybe there is something you DON’T want to hear, and what would that be?

I would like to hear the President Obama articulate a firm domestic and international stance by the U.S. to end human trafficking and child sex slavery.  President Obama (then candidate Obama) says this must be a “top priority.”  See for yourself:

I think it is time to do all of those things and more, and I would greatly hope the President could advance anti-trafficking legislation and policies that both political parties could back and pass into law.
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