Obama sworn in at White House ceremony ahead of speech today

City A.M. Reporter
PRESIDENT Barack Obama took the official oath for his second term yesterday at the White House in a small, private ceremony, ahead of a more public event this afternoon.

Gathered with his family in the Blue Room on the White House’s ceremonial main floor, Obama put his hand on a family Bible and recited the 35-word oath that was read out loud by US Chief Justice John Roberts.

It was a low-key start to the US president’s second term, which is likely to be dominated – at least at the start – by budget fights with Republicans and attempts to reform gun control and immigration laws.

Obama, 51, will be sworn in publicly today in front of as many as 800,000 people, a much bigger ceremony with a major address and a parade. Yesterday’s ceremony, shown live on television, was needed because the US Constitution mandates that the president take office on 20 January.

Also yesterday, Senator Charles Schumer said he and fellow Senate Democrats would, for the first time in more than three years, meet Republican demands to pass a US budget.