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Inaugural Visions: Presidents Washington to Obama

A closer look at comparing the road to the Presidency from George Washington to Barack Obama

Mount Vernon Education

on 18 January 2013

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Transcript of Inaugural Visions: Presidents Washington to Obama

Date Washington Obama April 30, 1789 January 20, 2013 Who Votes? Washington The Electoral College elected Washington unanimously. Obama Voters in each state go to the polls and vote for their favorite candidate. Electors vote in December. Number of States
at the time of Election Washington Obama 12 50 Presidential
and Obama Why is there an Electoral College? The Founding Fathers created the Electoral College (not a physical location) in the Constitution. It was a compromise between the election of a president by the Congress, and an election of a president by popular vote. How is the Vice President Elected? Washington Obama John Adams received the second highest number of votes from the Electors and was named
Vice-President. The Presidential candidate selects a
Vice-Presidential candidate from his own
party who will run with him on the
ballot. This typically takes place
following the Primary Elections. Political Parties Washington There were no political parties at the time of
Washington's election, but that doesn't mean the
signers of the Constitution agreed on everything. In fact
the only thing they could agree on was that
Washington should be the first President. Washington believed political parties were not good for the nation. Obama There are two major political parties in the United States today, the Democratic Party and the
Republican Party. President
Obama is a Democrat. Location Washington The first inauguration took place outside of Federal Hall, the first Chamber of Congress located in New York City. Washington lived in New York for 18 months while it was the Capital City of the United States. Obama The capital was moved to Philadelphia where Washington took his Second Inaugural Oath at Congress Hall The President is sworn in on a stage built specifically for the Inauguration
in front of the Capitol Building,
today's Chamber of Congress. Oath of Office "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." These 35 words have remained the same since Washington's First Inauguration; every President since then has recited this sentence. Who swears in the President? Washington Obama The Supreme Court had not been established,
so the highest ranking judge in New York, Chancellor Robert J. Livingston,
administered the Oath of Office. The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court,
John G. Roberts, Jr., will administer the
Oath of Office to President Obama this year. Inaugural Buttons These buttons were
created for Washington's
Inauguration. These buttons were created for Obama's 2013 Inauguration.
There is an online shop and a
store in downtown Washington,
D.C. that sells inaugural memorabilia. Suit believed to have
been worn by
at his First
Inauguration. George Washington's
Dress Sword Detail of Dress Sword Washington likely wore
this sword during his
inauguration. View this suit in the
Donald W. Reynolds Museum
and Education Center
here at Mount Vernon Washington's Inaugural Bible The Bible Washington used was borrowed from St. John's Masonic Lodge, No. 1 in New York City. The Bible was borrowed in haste because no Bible had been assigned for the Inauguration.
It was opened at random to
Genesis 49:13. Fun Fact Washington kissed the Bible after he took the Oath of Office. "So Help Me God" Although many people believe that George Washington added these words at the end of the Oath of Office, there is no evidence from the 18th Century that he said this. The tradition has been passed on and will most likely be said by President Obama on Monday January 21. We don't know for certain
how or when the statement
originated. Fun Fact Four other presidents have used the
George Washington Inaugural Bible
during their Inauguration.

President Warren G. Harding
President Dwight D. Eisenhower
President Jimmy Carter
President George H. W. Bush Lincoln Bible President Obama used the same Bible that President Abraham Lincoln used during his first inauguration. Obama is the only other president to use this Bible. Washington's First Inaugural Address The First Inaugural Address was
given only to Congress and
was 1,419 words long. Obama's First
Inaugural Address President Obama's First Inaugural Address was 2,404 words long and
lasted 21 minutes, 21 seconds.

He spoke from the steps of the
Capitol Building to the largest
crowd to ever attend the
Inauguration Ceremony. Washington's Second
Inaugural Address The Second Inaugural Address read in 1793 was the shortest in history, a brief 135 words. George Washington's Diary I bade adieu to Mount Vernon, to private life, and to domestic felicity, and with a mind oppressed with more anxious and painful sensations than I have words to express, set out for New York...with the best disposition to render service to my country in obedience to its call, but with less hope of answering its expectations. Washington left Mount Vernon to travel to New York on April 16, 1789 Letter to Henry Knox For myself, the delay may be compared to a reprieve; for in confidence I can assure you...that my movements to the chair of Government will be accompanied with feelings not unlike those of a culprit who is going to the place of his execution: so unwilling am I, in the evening of a life nearly consumed in public cares, to quit a peaceful abode for an Ocean of difficulties, without that competency of political skill—abilities & inclination which is necessary to manage the helm. Washington wrote this letter April 1, 1789 Who was there? Washington John Adams, Vice President
Robert Livingston, Chancellor of the State of New York
Baron Von Steuben, retired Major General
John Jay, Secretary of Foreign Affairs
General Henry Knox, Secretary for War
Senate Committee Members
House Committee Members Obama Joe Biden, Vice President
Members of Congress
Cabinet Members and Nominees
Justices of the Supreme Court
Former Presidents
Joint Chiefs of Staff
Governors First Sentence of First Inaugural Address Fellow-Citizens of the Senate and of the House of
Representatives among the vicissitudes incident to life no
event could have filled me with greater anxieties than that
of which the notification was transmitted by your order, and received on the 14th day of the present month. Washington Obama My fellow citizens, I stand here today humbled by the
task before us, grateful for the trust you bestowed,
mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. First Families Washington Obama Martha Washington
Nelly Custis
George Washington Parke Custis (Washy) Michelle Obama
Malia Obama
Sasha Obama Mrs. Washington, Nelly and Washy (Martha Washington's grandchildren) did not attend the First Inauguration The public ceremony will take place on January 21, 2013.
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