Government & Politics

Butler, Mo., man will be a guest of President Obama at the State of the Union address

President Barack Obama will deliver the State of the Union address Tuesday night in Washington.
President Barack Obama will deliver the State of the Union address Tuesday night in Washington. The Associated Press

A man from Butler, Mo., who wrote to President Barack Obama about his personal situation will be among the president’s guests in the audience for the State of the Union address Tuesday night.

Obama said Victor Fugate has been able to pay his student loans because of a new program capping monthly payments.

Typically, the White House invites people whose personal stories illustrate themes in the speech to sit with the first lady.

Obama announced the guests in his weekly radio and Internet address.

Fugate first wrote to the president three years ago, telling how he went from being an unemployed new father to obtaining his degree and helping low-income patients obtain medical care, according to the White House. He currently works with an agency of the Missouri Department of Mental Health.

Fugate credits the Income-Based Repayment Plan for allowing him to complete his education, according to the White House, which said the program allows Fugate and his wife to pay off their student loans at an affordable rate.

In July, Fugate introduced Obama at an appearance at the Uptown Theater.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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