January 20th, 2009
12:53 PM ET
13 years ago

In case you missed it: Here's the presidential oath of office

(CNN) - Chief Justice John Roberts seemed to have some trouble administering the presidential oath of office Tuesday. Here is the actual oath in full, as laid out in Article II, Section I of the U.S. Constitution:

Barack Obama is sworn in as the 44th US president by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts.

"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."

Filed under: Inauguration
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. vr6stress

    HA! What a crock...

    January 20, 2009 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  2. Tom Hayes, Winder, GA

    Thank God, and the brave voters, that Bush is GONE!!! FOREVER!!!!!

    January 20, 2009 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  3. gina in texas

    oh, let it go. You can't steal our joy today!!

    January 20, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  4. Turner

    Prior to President Obama taking the Presidential oath of offfice, he had been introduced all during the ceremony as 'President-Elect' Obama , not Senator Obama. Chief Justice Roberts when he administered the oath of office to Vice President Biden, he referred to him as the 'Vice-Presiden Elect' not Senator Biden. President Obama instead was referred to as Senator Obama. He wasn't asked to raise his right hand or anything of that nature in preparation of taking the oath. The Chief Justice seemed to rush through the oath of office with President Obama, unlike he did with Vice President Biden. How could he, Roberts, mess the oath up when swearing in our President? President Obama handled it well and appeared to know that a rather 'perfect' day had been botched by this overt slip of the tongue.

    January 20, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  5. nclaw441

    And Obama ALMOST got it right!!

    January 20, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  6. Andy Solomon

    The Oath of Office is part of the Constitution and the only part enclosed in quotation marks. It was altered by President Washington to make it clear that the Office of the President must use his best judgement but in the end adgere to the tenants of the Consityution.

    NPR did a wonderful piece on this.

    January 20, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  7. Alfred Bennett VI


    To all who have eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts to feel:

    It's a wonderful day to be alive, to watch the death of an administration which rooted its policies in all that is low in human nature: fear and divisiveness, shock and awe, stupidity and hubris, and the birth of one with a focus on what is high in each of us: reconciliation and redemption, forgiveness and fun, humility and confidence.

    A more stark contrast could not be drawn between the eight years of torture which the American Spirit has endured and this moment. A nation does have a collective spirit, a collective agreement that we all sign with each breath. And that agreement has been repeatedly betrayed by those who seized power and by those who allowed them to seize it. We allowed Bush to turn us into the axis of evil, and we can never allow it again.

    This is beyond party lines, it is beyond race lines, it is a move forward to begin an act in the play that does not have to resemble anything that has come before. We are the writers of this fiction. We are the creators of this reality. We are the ones we've waited for.

    The Obamic Age is about more than a man. It is a representation of a choice that we can make individually and together to meet each moment as a friend. To know that the future will be grand because we will be there to make it so. Every moment of every day, we face a choice: to move into an unknown future in faith or in fear. Let us begin to manifest our understanding of this magnificent choice.

    May we spend a few moments in silent gratitude to all of those who came before and sacrificed their comfort and their lives to show us that we are beautiful for our difference not in spite of it.

    It is the coming Age of Aquarius, the reseting of the great clock, a chance to re-imagine all that we believed about the world as children, and now as adults, make it to be so.

    This day and everyday hereafter. Amen.

    Alfred Bennett VI

    January 20, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  8. Terrence (Winston Salem, NC)

    What a great day to be American...

    January 20, 2009 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  9. GiroGeezer, Calif.

    vr6stress: I guess we all have to believe in something...

    I choose to believe in faith, the vision of our American fore fathers, and the realization of the American dream.
    God bless and keep President Obama and Vice President Biden.

    January 20, 2009 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  10. Anonymous

    you know obama botched it. we all heard it.

    January 20, 2009 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  11. NJHussein330

    Such as it is...He got the best part right

    January 20, 2009 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  12. Jennifer Coleman

    to vr6stress:

    Sorry to hear you are so bitter. GET OVER IT AND DO SOMETHING PRODUCTIVE!!!

    January 20, 2009 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  13. Brenda

    Obama didn't botch it. Roberts did. It sounded like Obama botched it because Roberts did not say it right for Obama to repeat. Obama actually said the correct words.

    January 20, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  14. Lynne

    President Obama didn't botch it. Chief Justice Roberts did. He left out the word 'faithfully' and Obama caught that.

    January 20, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  15. jamie

    What you heard, Anonymous, was Roberts botching the words and Obama, who surely had it memorized, stumbling because he was about to say something different (i.e., the correct version) from what Roberts' had just asked him to repeat.

    January 20, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  16. MNBluess

    Roberts recited it wrong and Obama knew it was wrong, so he tried to say it the correct way. I knew people would blame Obama–but those who know the oath know it was Robert's mistake.

    January 20, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  17. jody

    Obama didn't botch it...the Chief Justice did.

    January 20, 2009 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  18. James in NYC

    It feels so cool for this generation X'er to be able to feel that Kennedy-esque excitement.
    President Obama is truly one of those special people and I am glad that he is at the helm of our great country!

    January 20, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  19. Perusing-through

    Our time has arrived. Bitter people like "vr6stress" can either get onboard, or step aside. As our new President has said, put aside the childish mess and let us get things done! You chose "vr6stress". Be a solution finder, or go sit in the peanut gallery with the other worthless clowns.

    January 20, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  20. Jeremy

    Thanks to all those who have clarified what actually happened. For those people below who are being critical of Obama, try to take a step back from being so critical about every little thing. Think positively and constructively. This is a new day!

    January 20, 2009 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  21. Jaik WIllis

    That reordering of words looked very deliberate, with the emphasis and smirk at the end. If it were an accident the way Roberts did that, he would have stumbled as well. Roberts sabotaged the oath of office, the sort of behavior we've seen from the RNC again and again, trying to interfere with democracy. Was it ugly Rovian Republicanism or was it racism ? That was the lowest political attack I've ever seen in the US. Roberts had better apologize and set that straight. But he won't, he's a Bush appointee. At a time for coming together as a nation, they still haven't stopped their games. Let's hope Obama will lead the country away from that sort of behavior.

    January 20, 2009 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  22. Frank

    Today is a joyous, momentous and historic occasion. I can't understand why people want to see our new President fail so badly. In their eyes, President Obama can do no right. It's that cynicism, pettiness, and partisanship that has us where we are today. Give him a chance. And, as far as "flubbing" the oath, not that it matters, but Chief Justice Roberts was seen mouthing to the President, "It was my fault." Even if it wasn't, just think back to weddings you've attended, or possibly even your own, when you have to repeat after the officiant your marriage vows. Every single one, either the bride and/or groom "flubbed" their vows. It's natural. Grow up!

    January 20, 2009 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  23. Jason

    Obama botched the first line, too. It's not John Roberts fault.

    January 20, 2009 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  24. Dave

    Sorry about the mis-spelling. I did mean to say "swearing-in"

    January 20, 2009 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  25. jm

    Who cares? He is the President. Cut them both some slack – there were ALOT of people there, and nerves got the best of them.

    January 20, 2009 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
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