January 22, 2009 05:05:30 GMT
President Barack Obama takes the oath of office for a second time in the Map Room of the White House in Washington, DC.
Out of what is claimed as "an abundance of caution," president Barack Obama has taken the oath of office for a second time on Wednesday night, January 21. The oath retake, taking place in the Map Room of the White House in Washington, DC, lasted for about 25 seconds. The event was closed to TV camera crews and news photographers. Only a few of Obama's closest aides were there, along with a White House photographer.
Concerning what prompts the oath retake, it is reported that Chief Justice John Roberts, who first administered the oath to Obama on Tuesday, January 20 on the steps of the U.S. Capitol, accidentally switched the word order when he administered the oath. He said "I will execute the office of president to the United States faithfully," instead of, "I will faithfully execute the office of president of the United States," Reuters reports.
Roberts quickly repeated the phrase upon realizing the fact that he had made a mistake, but without repeating the word "execute." Obama, who briefly interrupted the chief justice by starting the oath before Roberts finished reciting the first part, then repeated Roberts' original, incorrect version "... the office of president of the United States faithfully."
Speaking about that encounter, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs told the press as quoting a statement from White House counsel Greg Craig, "We believe that the oath of office was administered effectively and that the president was sworn in appropriately yesterday. But the oath appears in the Constitution itself and, out of an abundance of caution, because there was one word out of sequence, Chief Justice John Roberts will administer the oath a second time."
"We decided that because it was so much fun ...," Obama jokingly told reporters before taking the second oath. Inside the Map Room, Roberts asked him, "Are you ready to take the oath?", to which he responded, "Yes, I am," adding, "And we're going to do it very slowly."
"Congratulations again," Roberts told Obama when he finished taking the oath. "Thank you sir," Obama replied.