The President and Chief Justice Roberts correct their Inauguration Day flubs

By Stephen M. Silverman
Updated January 22, 2009 06:20 AM
Credit: Jae C. Hong/AP

After a busy first day attending a prayer service, addressing staff and dealing with issues involving the Middle East and Iraq, President Obama did a little backtracking.

With only a few aides and reporters looking on Wednesday at 7:35 p.m., the nation’s 44th chief executive repeated the oath of office ceremony with Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. – who had flubbed his lines at Tuesday’s very public swearing-in ceremony, when Roberts misplaced the adverb “faithfully.” And Obama mimicked him.

The second time was the charm. Both men got their lines right.

“Congratulations, again,” said Roberts, smiling, afterwards.

“Thank you, sir,” Obama replied.

“We believe the oath of office was administered effectively and that the president was sworn in appropriately” on Tuesday, White House Counsel Greg Craig said in a statement.

“But the oath appears in the Constitution itself. And out of abundance of caution, because there was one word out of sequence, Chief Justice Roberts administered the oath a second time.”

President Obama had a more lighthearted interpretation for gathering the staff and repeating the ceremony – because “we decided it was so much fun.”