Michelle Obama's State of the Union guest: Warren Buffett's secretary

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The secretary for one of the world’s wealthiest men and the wife of late Apple cofounder Steve Jobs are among those invited by the White House to attend the State of the Union address.

The State of the Union guest list has become an annual rite, with the first lady’s box taking on the sort of gravitas shown at the Academy Awards’ Red Carpet ceremony. The guests often have ties to a proposal or initiative the president will outline in the address.

The White House said Debbie Bosanek, the secretary for billionaire Warren Buffett, would be among those attending the speech. Obama has frequently cited Buffett’s complaint that the tax code is unfair because he pays a lower tax rate than his secretary.

The White House said Laurene Powell Jobs, the wife of late Apple cofounder Steve Jobs, also would attend Obama’s prime-time address. Adam Rapp, a cancer survivor the White House says benefitted from Obama’s health care overhaul, also will join Michelle Obama in the first lady’s box Tuesday night.

Mark Kelly, former astronaut and husband of outgoing Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, will attend as well. Giffords is resigning from Congress to focus on her recovery after being shot, but will be on the House floor during the State of the Union.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.