Trump’s swearing-in US’ 58th president inauguration ceremony

Donald Trump’s swearing-in on Friday was the 58th formal presidential inaugural ceremony since 1789, when US’ first president George Washington was inaugurated.

By Author   |   Published: 20th Jan 2017   10:05 pm Updated: 20th Jan 2017   10:06 pm
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The Presidential motorcade drives on Pennsylvania Avenue to the Capitol for the Inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, Friday, Jan. 20, 2017, in Washington. Photo: AP.

Washington: Donald Trump’s swearing-in on Friday was the 58th formal presidential inaugural ceremony since 1789, when US’ first president George Washington was inaugurated.

In all, US presidents have been sworn into office 70 times — usually in public, sometimes in private following the death or resignation of a president, or because Inauguration Day fell on a Sunday.

Notably, the US Senate oversaw the first 28 inaugurations of both the president and the vice president. But it was on February 4, 1901, that Senate approved a concurrent resolution to create a Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies (JCCIC).

The Senate and House of Representatives then appointed members on February 5, 1901. Since then, all inaugural ceremonies at the US Capitol have been organised by JCCIC.

However, a separate inaugural committee, appointed by the president-elect, has the responsibility of all official inaugural events, other than those held at the Capitol Hill.

The military also plays a role with the Joint Task Force- National Capital Region, which coordinates all military participation and support for the inaugural ceremonies.

Although US Constitution specified that the oath is taken by the President, its framers provided that Congress would determine when and where the inauguration would take place.

America’s interests in the inauguration has grown over the decades. By late 1820s, what had typically been a small, indoor ceremony moved outdoors, allowing more people to witness this important event first hand.

By the end of 19th century, the presidential inauguration evolved into an elaborate day-long event, marked by parades, fireworks, luncheons, and glamorous Inaugural Balls.

According to schedule, vice president-elect Mike Pence was sworn in first, followed by Trump and the JCCIC hosted a Congressional luncheon for them. Nearly 200 guests including members of their families, the Supreme Court, Cabinet designees, and members of Congressional leadership are believed to have attended the ceremony in Statuary Hall.

In 1789, first US President George Washington dined alone after his inauguration, but in the modern era, the JCCIC has hosted a luncheon at the Capitol after the ceremonies.

Traditionally, after the newly elected president has taken the oath and delivered his inaugural address, he is escorted to Statuary Hall in the US Capitol for the inaugural luncheon.
As the 20th century progressed, White House luncheons have become elaborate.