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January 12, 2009


Jeremy Pierce

I would have thought that it is Obama in saying the oath whose status as individual or government officer matters. Isn't Roberts there just to remind him what to say?

The Neoabolitionist

I guess we'll have to wait until the inauguration to find out if Roberts is just a gentleman or if he's also a scholar.

Will Roberts wear judicial robes, thereby implying that he is acting in an official capacity when he complies with Obama's request that he be prompted by Roberts to add the clause "so help me God" to the words prescribed by the Constitution; or will Roberts dress in civilian clothes, thereby implying that he is acting in his individual capacity when he complies with Obama's request.

Obama could have asked anyone of his own choosing to administer his oath or affirmation. I know of no history of any personal relationship between them that would have led Obama to choose Roberts. So, it seems apparent that he asked Robert's precisely because of his official capacity as Chief Justice. Thus, by also asking Roberts to prompt him with the additional language not prescribed in the Constitution, it would seem that Obama is indeed seeking official endorsement of his personal choice to add the religious language to his oath. Indeed, if he were merely seeking to make a personal statement, it would be more effective if he were to add the clause unprompted.

From the perspective of the "establishment clause," it is difficult to be optimistic about Obama's judicial appointees.

(Indeed, the political acumen of the President-elect doesn't seem to be measuring up to that of the candidate for change. The latter would have asked Michelle, rather than Roberts, to administer his oath.)

RJ Taylor

Very cool Dan, You're like super-server!!! Good Job!

I find it a bit appalling that it is so easy to approach the Chief Justice of the United States at his home. What if the guy had been someone intending to harm the Chief Justice?

Dave Hardy

That's cool. Didn't say "Naw, he's not home, I'm his brother" and then run for it. And unlike his unworthy predecessor Berger, didn't answer the door with gun in hand, in violation of local law, and then gripe about the right to arms.

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