January 21st, 2009
08:18 PM ET
9 years ago

A major Bush rule gets scrapped by Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/21/art.ovaloffice.cnn.jpg caption="What’s missing in this picture?"] (CNN) - It's the same Oval Office. The same desk. Even the same curtains. But President Obama has already made one major change: Go through eight years of White House photos, and you won't find one of former President Bush in the Oval Office without his jacket on.

It wasn't just a personal preference. In the Bush administration, it was a rule: Jackets in the Oval Office - and now, it seems, one of the first Bush-era regulations to get scrapped in the Obama White House.

- CNN's John King contributed to this report

Filed under: Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (803 Responses)
  1. Jim D. in Costa Mesa

    It didn't do Bush much good. Enough said!

    January 21, 2009 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  2. Elle

    Why would he need a jacket to show respect for the office. What he DOES in the office demonstrates his respect more than what he wears. All the people complaining about not wearing a jacket must be over 50.

    January 21, 2009 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  3. kisha

    You know why Bush never had his coat off??? Thats because he never really did anything behind that desk but take orders from others on what decisions to make. President Obama is getting down to business and not waiting on any speeches to be prepared for him to be read off of paper!

    January 21, 2009 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  4. tee


    You are ignorant. Get rid of all the smoke screens. we all know who are the hard workers and quick thinkers. Don't believe the sterotypes or your HYPE. I see the truth everyday.

    January 21, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  5. Charles Atlanta

    Obama represents new and younger generations. No jack in office works for almost everybody in today's business environment.

    January 21, 2009 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  6. Rick-California

    Though Clinton did make the tough decision to not keep his pants on, we can all agree that he was willing to make that tough decision. As we all know, its not about whether the decision was right or not, just the fact that you had the courage to make that decision. Oh how I am going to miss the decider.

    January 21, 2009 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  7. uncle jimbo - Chicago

    Lolita – You hit the nail right on the head –

    "If taking your jacket off allows you to get more work done than President Bush did, then be my guest. I don't care if he takes his shoes off as long as he gets this country back on its feet!!!"

    The sooner I don't hear the name Bush anymore the better I will feel.

    January 21, 2009 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  8. Brenda in Detroit

    He can wear whatever he wants. He is already hard at work attempting to fix the Bush debacle of the last 8 yrs. In this case, it certainly does not matter what clothes a man is wearing. Bush could have worn 10 suits at once and it would not have mattered. The man was NOT Presidential material. He would not have even been in the Oval office had it not been for his daddy's friends, the Supreme Court. Have you all forgotten how he got there?

    January 21, 2009 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  9. Jeff, SC

    It's 2009, not 1959. "Traditions" of the past, like...institutionalized racism, bigotry, ignorance, and bullying have just been replaced in the Oval Office, but obviously not among the GOP's constituency.

    Welcome to the new era. The train is leaving, and no one is waiting for you.

    Good luck.

    January 21, 2009 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  10. Michelle Bell from Alabama

    The jacket does not define the man. It is the work done by the man that defines him. With or without the jacket, President Obama must do the task before him and do it well. To everyone that says his attire is disrespectful to the Oval Office answer this question:

    Is it dissrepestful to ___________ while in the Oval Office?

    a) to dress in a coat and tie while destoying the foundation of America

    b) dress comforably while restoring America

    January 21, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  11. sha

    Lighten up people. Its his office, you know, the place he works...I am sure when he meets with important people in that office he'll put his stupid coat on. Wearing a coat doesn't make you a professional it just makes you warm. I would be more concerned with his actions. Besides, it wasn't a presidential rule it was George Bush's rule and he's not the boss anymore. When you call a place of service do you care what the person on the other end of the phone is wearing? No. You worry about whether they can get the job done.

    January 21, 2009 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  12. Lucy

    He could work naked for all I care. I just want him in the Oval Office.

    January 21, 2009 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  13. Jim

    There is nothing sacred for Obama, No tradition or fortitude either, He's a chump. Next He'll be wearing an Aloha Shirt or maybe even his Somalian cloth... I won't even be surprised. And all you Lefts will still make excuses.

    January 21, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  14. Barbara

    Um ....Obama grew up in Hawaii-we have a different dress code here.
    If you do happen to see a suit-a rare occasion,you wonder what's going on? is it the FBI? some sort of Federal worker?
    I honestly can't remember the last time I saw any one in a suit.
    can't blame him for not wanting to be uncomfortable when he is trying to think about more pressing matters than his wardrobe

    January 21, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  15. an American

    Joyce you're right. Just a little over 24 hours and some people are determine to go back in time to the 60s, 50s, back till 1776. People are making these stupid statements over an article about not wearing a suit jacket. Instead of questioning his respect for the office. Respect the Man in Office!!!!!!!

    January 21, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  16. Bill

    I am not an Obama supporter, but I really don't think that Obama's lack of wearing a jacket is the worst thing to ever go on in the oval office.

    January 21, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  17. Lana C

    Actually, I see it as relevant. To me it validates that Bush was all about pomp and circumstance and "appearances" to make him LOOK like he was working to get the job done, but it was a charade. Like a kid dressing up to look like an adult. Obama is obviously more interested in getting things done and less concerned about what looks good in photos....thank goodness.

    January 21, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  18. catherine

    not wearing a jacket doesn't mean your work is sloppy – get a brain

    January 21, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  19. notwithstanding

    I wouldn't care if he wore a big pint bunny suit, he'd still look smarter than the last guy.

    Stupid coverage. This is why we're so divided.

    January 21, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  20. Chas

    First time any real honest work has been done in the Oval Office in 8 years! The only real way to get the job done is to roll up your sleeves and get the dust off! Congratulations Barack!

    January 21, 2009 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  21. SouthernGirl850

    Wow, as I sit here in my office reading these posts I am completely shocked at some of the asinine comments. It's sad that your perception of African Americans is so tainted. After everything that has transpired over the last couple of months, I see racism is alive and well in the United States. Who cares whether or not Obama wears a coat or not. I am most concerned about the work he does for the people of this great nation. Bush ran this county for 4 years without a coat and look where we are. Perhaps some of the negative posters have forgotten that YOUR President is a Harvard Law graduate. I wonder how many of you are bitter because an educated African American male has been elected to the highest office in the country. Shattered dreams perhaps?

    January 21, 2009 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  22. Robert Conard

    I'd like to see him roll the shirt sleves up. I mean after all... it's time to get down to business.

    January 21, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  23. Sammy

    Whoop dee freakin doo!

    January 21, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  24. Terence

    I am glad to see my president bringing some reality to the oval office.

    After all, it is work, not a fashion show. Whoever said "the clothes make the man" was an idiot.

    Some folks walk the walk but don't talk the talk.

    Some folks talk the talk but don't walk the walk.

    My president does both.

    January 21, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  25. Oregon calling

    A new direction in every bit of the word! Thank you for being an average person President Obama. Now please talk to Congress about all of their pay raises. The "Average" person does NOT make $172,000 per year. Not even some of the top directors of non profits. I thought that this is about service for your country NOT getting wealthy off of the backs of the hard workers here.

    Peace 🙂

    January 21, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
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