21, 2009 -- President Obama's first full day at the White House
...based on White House
statements and pool reports
STATEMENT FROM WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY ROBERT GIBBS
At 8:35 AM, the President arrived in the Oval Office and spent 10
minutes alone in the office. He read the note left to him by
President Bush that was in an envelope marked “To: #44, From:
#43”. At 8:45 AM, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel came in
to discuss the schedule of today’s events. The First Lady came
into the Oval Office at 9:10 AM. We will release a picture
[Motorcade to the Washington National Cathedral for Prayer Service;
Sermon by Rev. Sharon Watkins]
STATEMENT FROM ROBERT GIBBS
"This morning, the President placed phone calls to
four Middle Eastern leaders: President Mubarak of Egypt, Prime Minister
Olmert of Israel, King Abdullah of Jordan, and President Abbas of the
Palestinian Authority. He used this opportunity on his first day
in office to communicate his commitment to active engagement in pursuit
of Arab-Israeli peace from the beginning of his term, and to express
his hope for their continued cooperation and leadership. In the
aftermath of the Gaza conflict, he emphasized his determination to work
to help consolidate the ceasefire by establishing an effective
anti-smuggling regime to prevent Hamas from rearming, and facilitating
in partnership with the Palestinian Authority a major reconstruction
effort for Palestinians in Gaza. He pledged that the United
States would do its part to make these efforts successful, working
closely with the international community and these partners as they
fulfill their responsibilities as well. The President appreciated
the spirit of partnership and warm nature of these calls."
Early this afternoon at 1:15, the President will attend a swearing-in ceremony for the White
House staff in the Vice President's Ceremonial Suite on the 2nd floor
of the EEOB. After the ceremony, the President will sign executive orders on Executive Branch
The President will also attend the open house at the White House
at the base of staircase on the ground level by State Room.
Later this afternoon, the President will be briefed on the economy by
National Economic Director Lawrence Summers, Office of Management and
Budget Director Peter Orszag, White House Policy Council Director
Melody Barnes and White House coordinator of energy and climate policy
The President will then hold a meeting on Iraq in the Situation Room
with the Vice President, a representative from the State Department,
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, White House Chief of Staff Rahm
Emanuel, National Security Advisor General James Jones, Chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mullen, General David Petraeus,
Commander in Chief, U.S. Central Command, U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan
Crocker and General Ray Odierno, commander of the Multi-National
Force-Iraq who will join via video conference.
[According to the pool
report by Wes Anderson, two-hundred people won passes for the open
The PIC had sent out an e-mail on Jan. 16:
President-elect Obama and Vice
President-elect Biden have
committed to running one of the most open and accessible presidential
administrations in our nation's history.
And that begins on day one, when we
open the doors of the White House to you.
On Wednesday, January 21st, we will
be hosting an Open House reception
at the White House for hundreds of special guests. If you are among the
first to sign up today, you and a friend could be there.
Our success in the next four years
will depend on new levels of
openness and participation. Bringing change to Washington, D.C. is
something we should all be part of.
That's why we're starting off by
opening the doors of the White House to you.
Be there on President Obama's
historic first day in office.
Sign up today and you and a guest
could attend an Open House reception at the White House on Wednesday,
The Presidential Inaugural Committee
P.S. -- On January 19th, help us
renew American together by joining a
D.C. service event to support our troops. Text SERVE to 56333, or learn
[at 7:35 p.m. Obama repeated the oath in the Map Room; per the pool
report by Wes Allison present were: "Justice Roberts with a staff
member, Robert Gibbs, David Axelrod, Greg Craig, a WH Photographer and
STATEMENT FROM WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL GREG CRAIG
"We believe that the oath of office was administered effectively and
that the President was sworn in appropriately yesterday. But the
oath appears in the Constitution itself. And out of an abundance
of caution, because there was one word out of sequence, Chief Justice
Roberts administered the oath a second time."
[This event was also the subject of
an exchange between reporters and Press
Secretary Robert Gibbs during his briefing on Jan. 22].
[Obama rounded out the day by a
party for campaign/DNC/transition staff at the DC Armory; according to the pool report he
spoke for 15m40s and worked the rope line.]