Order Code RS21950
Updated December 7, 2004
CRS Report for Congress
Received through the CRS Web
The Presidential Inauguration of 2005: Basic
Facts and Information on Inaugural Festivities
Tom Coipuram, Jr.
Senior Research Librarian
Information Research Division
The next presidential inauguration is set for January 20, 2005. This report provides
general information and facts concerning past inaugurations and the forthcoming one,
as well as historical information on the weather on inauguration day and the financing
of past inaugural festivities. Also provided is information on where to obtain tickets for
the inaugural festivities and how to participate in the inaugural parade, and a brief list
of resources on the history of presidential inaugurations and compilations of inaugural
addresses. This report will be updated as events warrant.
The next inauguration of the President of the United States is set for Thursday,
January 20, 2005.1 In early 2004, both the Senate and House of Representatives approved
S.Con.Res. 94,2 a resolution establishing the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural
Ceremonies (JCCIC), and S.Con.Res. 93, a resolution authorizing the use of the Capitol
Rotunda by the JCCIC.
Inauguration Day as a Federal Holiday. According to the Office of Personnel
Management (OPM) website, federal employees who work “in the District of Columbia,
Montgomery or Prince George’s Counties in Maryland, Arlington or Fairfax Counties in
Virginia, or the cities of Alexandria or Fairfax in Virginia, and who [are] regularly
The U.S. Constitution, Twentieth Amendment, “Commencement of the Terms of Office,” states,
“The terms of the President and Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January ...”
(ratified Jan. 23, 1933).
The authorities contained in S.Con.Res. 94 and S.Con.Res. 93 will expire at the end of the 108th
Congress on Jan. 3, 2005, and are expected to be renewed when the 109th Congress convenes in
Congressional Research Service ˜ The Library of Congress
scheduled to perform non-overtime work on Inauguration Day, [are] entitled to a holiday”
on Inauguration Day (January 20th of each fourth year after 1965).3
In response to a variety of questions relating to the presidential inauguration, the
following selected information has been compiled: costs of recent inaugural festivities;
historical facts on past presidential inaugurations and the various inaugural committees;
and information on how to obtain tickets to the swearing-in ceremony, inaugural balls and
galas, and how to participate in the inaugural parade.
Costs of Recent Inaugural Festivities. Following is information on financing
of past inaugural festivities:4
George W. Bush, 2001, est. $30 million5
Bill Clinton, 1997, est. $29 million (included is the $9 million surplus
from the 1993 inauguration); 1993, est. between $25 million and $30
George H. W. Bush, 1989, est. $30 million
Ronald Reagan, 1985, est. $20 million; 1981, est. $16.3 million
Jimmy Carter, 1977, est. $3.5 million
Richard Nixon, 1973, est. $4 million
Past Presidential Inaugurations. Historical information on past presidential
inaugurations can be found at the Library of Congress website, Presidential Inaugurations:
“I Do Solemnly Swear ...,” which is a collection of 400 selected items from each of the
63 inaugurations from George Washington’s in 1789 to George W. Bush’s in 2001. This
site, at [http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/pihtml/pihome.html], has a wealth of historical
Diaries and letters of Presidents and of those who witnessed the
Handwritten drafts of inaugural addresses
Past inaugural tickets and programs
Inaugural prints, photographs, and sheet music
Facts about the oaths of office, precedents, and notable events
Bible and scripture passages for each President since George Washington
See OPM’s 2005 Federal Holiday website [http://www.opm.gov/FEDHOL/2005.asp]
Estimated costs through 1997 are from the 1997 Presidential Inaugural Committee and Facts
on File, 1997.
“Bush Takes Oath of Office as 43rd U.S. President,” Facts on File World Press Digest, Jan. 20,
Recent Presidential Inaugurations.
The PBS Online NewsHour website can be found at
[http://www.pbs.org/newshour/inauguration/]. It provides historical
information on past inaugurations, including a photo gallery, and
inauguration fashion, plus links to President George W. Bush’s 2001
The National Archives and Records Administration’s Clinton
Inaugurations website is available at the following address:
history.html]. It provides information and links to Bill Clinton’s 1993
and 1997 inaugurations.
A brief history of the first presidential inauguration, including
information on the tradition, language, and technology in past and current
inaugurations is also available at the National Archives and Records
Administration’s Clinton Inauguration site at [http://clinton4.nara.gov/
The Presidential Inaugural: Documentary Photographs website of the
Smithsonian Institution provides photographs of recent inaugurals (19851997), including photographs of inaugural festivities held at various
Smithsonian Museums since 1881: [http://photo2.si.edu/inaugural/
“I Do Solemnly Swear”: A Half Century of Inaugural Images from the
U.S. Senate Collection features historic engravings that depict inaugural
festivities at the Capitol and around Washington, DC, from Franklin
Pierce’s 1853 inauguration to Theodore Roosevelt’s 1905 inauguration.
Inaugural Day Weather. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration’s (NOAA) Eastern Regions Headquarters website, Presidential Inaugural
Weather, provides numerous facts on the weather during presidential inaugurations,
including normal weather for January inaugurations, extreme weather for past
inaugurations, inaugural weather fact sheets, and a chart showing the inauguration day
weather (with notes) for each presidential inauguration from 1798 to 1997:
Inaugural Addresses. Texts of the inaugural addresses of U.S. Presidents from
George Washington to George W. Bush are available at the Avalon Project of Yale Law
School website at [http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/presiden/inaug/inaug.htm] or at
the Bartleby.com website at [http://www.bartleby.com/124/].
Inaugural Committees, Tickets, and Parade Information
Three major committees6 plan and support the various inaugural activities.
Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies (JCCIC). The
JCCIC, at [http://www.inaugural.senate.gov/], is responsible for conducting the official
swearing-in ceremony of the President and Vice President at the Capitol on January 20,
2005. This committee also distributes blocks of tickets for the swearing-in ceremony to
Members of both houses, and Members may decide how they wish to distribute the
tickets. Detailed information about the allotments and the distribution process is to be
available after the November 2004 election, and tickets are to be distributed in early
January 2005. Historical information concerning the JCCIC and the names of past and
current members of the committee is available at the JCCIC website. Also included is a
link to “Facts & Firsts,” which provides historical information on past presidential
inaugurations from George Washington to William J. Clinton. For additional information
on the swearing-in ceremony, congressional offices may contact the JCCIC, Senate
Russell Office Building Courtyard, Room 5, at 4-8232.
Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC).
The PIC at
[http://www.inaugural05.com] organizes, plans, and executes most of the inaugural
celebration activities, including the inaugural parade, opening ceremonies, concerts, galas,
and inaugural balls. The PIC, which is directly responsible to the newly elected President
and is staffed by volunteers, generally from the winning party, is to be formed shortly
after the general election on November 2, 2004. All requests for ball tickets, the parade,
and gala information should be referred to the PIC. The PIC, with the support of the Joint
Task Force-Armed Forces Inaugural Committee (JTF-AFIC) [see below], also selects the
high school and college bands that will participate in the inaugural parade. Traditionally,
the bands are chosen so that each of the 50 states is represented. For additional
information concerning the PIC, including the leadership of the 2005 PIC, see the White
House November 19, 2004, press release7 or contact the PIC at 202-863-2005.
Joint Task Force - Armed Forces Inaugural Committee (JTF-AFIC). The
JTF-AFIC at [http://www.afic.army.mil/], which is established by the Secretary of
Defense, continues the tradition of military participation in the presidential inaugurations
that dates back to 1789. It supports the work of both the JCCIC and the PIC. However,
the JTF-AFIC only supplements support to the PIC. For example, it does not choose the
groups that will take part in the inauguration, but will collect and organize applications
from groups and individuals interested in participating in various inaugural events.
Information concerning the inaugural parade and an online application for school bands
or individuals interested in participating in the inaugural parade, including contact
information (e-mail and address), is available at the “How Can I Participate?” link of the
JTF-AFIC website. Applications may be submitted online (recommended) or mailed to
the JTF-AFIC at the following address:
Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies (JCCIC) Fact Sheet, Sept. 19, 2000.
Full text of the November 19, 2004, White House press release is available at the White House
website at [http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2004/11/20041119.html].
Joint Task Force Armed Forces
ATTN: Band Control
330 C Street SW, Suite 4064 A
Washington, DC 20597-5580
Inaugural Tickets, School Bands, and the Inaugural Parade.
Detailed information about the allotments and the distribution process is
to be available after the general election on November 2, 2004, but
information concerning tickets for the swearing-in ceremony, which is
available from the JCCIC, will not be available until early January 2005.
Tickets for the inauguration balls and galas are available from the PIC
Applications to participate in the inaugural parade are available at the
“How Can I Participate?” link of the JTF-AFIC website at
[http://www.afic.army.mil/]. Applications may be submitted online
(recommended) or mailed to the JTF-AFIC at the above address. The
JTF-AFIC is accepting applications now.
In past presidential inaugurations, a Senator or Representative has either nominated
or recommended a school band from their state or district to the PIC for the inaugural
parade. School bands, in addition to submitting an application with the JTF-AFIC, can
also contact their Senators or Representatives if they are interested in participating in the
Additional Sources of Information
Boller, Paul F. Presidential Inaugurations. New York: Harcourt, Inc., 2001.
Durbin, Louise. Inaugural Cavalcade. New York: Dodd, Mead, 1971.
Hurja, E. Edward. History of Presidential Inaugurations. New York: New York
The Inaugural Story, 1789-1969. New York: American Heritage Pub. Co., 1969. 175 p.
Kittler, Glenn D. Hail to the Chief: The Inauguration Days of Our Presidents.
Philadelphia: Chilton Books, 1965.
Lomask, Milton. “I Do Solemnly Swear ...”: The Story of the Presidential Inauguration.
New York: Ariel Books, 1966.
McKee, Thomas Hudson. Presidential Inaugurations: from George Washington, 1789,
to Grover Cleveland, 1893. Washington, DC: Statistical Pub. Co., 1893.
Presidential Inaugurations: A Selected List of References. Washington, DC: Library of
Presidential Inaugural Addresses
Humes, James C. My Fellow Americans: Presidential Addresses That Shaped History.
New York: Praeger, 1992.
The Inaugural Addresses of the Presidents. Edited with introd. by John Gabriel Hunt.
Rev. ed. New York: Gramercy Books, 1997.
Newton, Davis. The Presidents Speak: The Inaugural Addresses of the American
Presidents from Washington to Clinton. New York: H. Holt and Co., 1994.