The president and the pen: an Inauguration Day tradition.
President Barack Obama has continued the generation-old practice of signing nomination papers for members of his cabinet just minutes after taking the oath of office. Following his inauguration speech, Obama scrawled his John Hancock across papers to officially nominate John Brennan to be director of the CIA, former Sen. Chuck Hagel for secretary of defense, Sen. John Kerry to be secretary of state and Jack Lew to be Treasury secretary.
Obama signed the papers in the President’s Room in the Capitol. The small, ornate room was historically used by presidents to sign last-minute legislation passed just before the terms of Congress and the president expired — back when they both expired on March 4.
President Ronald Reagan established the tradition of visiting the Capitol’s President’s Room after taking the oath to sign documents and pose for photographs.
— Stephen Ohlemacher — Twitter: http://twitter.com/stephenatap
Inauguration Watch follows the events of President Barack Obama’s second inaugural. Look for short items and photos throughout the day.