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Events

Inauguration Day 2013

When Barack Obama takes the oath of office on January 21, 2013, it will mark the 57th time that a U.S. president has been sworn in for a four-year term since 1789, when George Washington first took the same oath.

On January 21, Obama will stand before a judge — in this case Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts — and swear the 35-word oath prescribed in Article II, Section 1, of the Constitution:

“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

(source: U.S. Departmetn of State/IIP)

U.S. Government Documents

Photo Galleries

  • Historic Inaugurations Gallery
    Historic Inaugurations (13 photos)

    Every four years, Washington is crowded with visitors eager to personally witness the peaceful transfer of executive power that is a hallmark of American democracy. 

Pamphlets

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    Many U.S. governmental institutions and political traditions support continuity in the midst of change. The laws and traditions surrounding presidential inaugurations are among the best examples of continuity during political change.  

  • U.S. Presidential Transitions: Second Terms
    U.S. Presidential Transitions: Second Terms

    The roughly 75 days between a U.S. presidential election and the inauguration are as important to a second-term president as they are to a newly elected president, but the priorities are different. 

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