President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden both took their oaths of office today for the start of their second terms as President and Vice President. The 20th Amendment of the Constitution specifies that president’s and vice president’s terms begin at noon on January 20.
For the seventh time in 200 years, inauguration day fell on a Sunday. Since 1917, incoming or reelected presidents have chosen to take the oath in relative privacy, rather than hold public ceremonies on a Sunday.
Obama took the oath today at 11:55 a.m., flanked by his wife and two daughters. The ceremony was carried live on national television.
Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. administered the oath, just as he did four years ago, but without any gaffes this time. In 2009, Roberts was working from memory and Obama mangled the wording of the oath during the inaugural ceremony. White House lawyers, out of an abundance of caution, summoned the chief justice to the White House the next evening to administer the oath a second time. Today, Roberts read the oath from a card that he held to prevent another mishap.
Vice President Joe Biden took his second-term oath earlier today in a similar ceremony.
There will be a reenactment of the swearing in ceremony for the public tomorrow, Monday Jan. 2013, on the West Front of the Capitol, and then the President will deliver his second inaugural address.
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