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January 20, 2017

During assembly on Friday, January 20, Gabe Fleisher '20 spoke about the history and timetable of today's inauguration:

As many of you know, Donald J. Trump and Michael R. Pence will be sworn in as President and Vice President of the United States. January 20 has served as Inauguration Day since 1937, after the ratification of the 20th Amendment of the Constitution, and many of the day's events are heavily orchestrated and rooted in traditions going back centuries. President-elect Trump's began the day with a Morning Worship Service, a tradition established by FDR in 1933. The Trumps will then head to the White House for tea and coffee with the Obamas; then, as every President and President-elect have since 1837, Trump and Obama will ride together to the Capitol, which would certainly be an interesting car ride.

The chair of this year's Inaugural Committee is our own Missouri senator, Roy Blunt, who will open the ceremony, followed by music from the Missouri State University choir. Then, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas will administer the Vice Presidential oath to Pence. Trump will be sworn in by Chief Justice John Roberts, uttering the same oath of just 35 words as every President since George Washington, officially ending the eight-year Obama Presidency and marking a new era in American history. More than 800,000 attendees are expected to witness the Inauguration in D.C., including the Trump family, the Obama family, the Clintons and other former presidential couples, the entire Supreme Court, most of the U.S. Congress, and some protestors.

No matter if you supported Donald Trump's campaign for the Presidency, today is an important reminder of the peaceful transitions of power that really are an American invention and a touchstone of our American democracy. To that end, thanks to Mr. Connor, Burroughs will be showing the Inauguration today on the TV in the Haertter Hall lobby, so you are encouraged to join and watch as our new Commander-in-Chief takes office.