Barack Obama

Inaugural Luncheon Toast

delivered 21 January 2020, U.S. Statuary Hall, United States Capitol, Washington, D.C.

Audio AR-XE mp3 of Address


Michelle and the Speaker of the House came to a meeting of the minds that I may be delaying the proceedings too much.  And so Iím just going to be extraordinarily brief and say thank you -- to my Vice President, who has not only been an extraordinary partner but an extraordinary friend; and to Dr. Jill Biden, who has partnered with my wife with extraordinary generosity on behalf of our men and women in uniform.

To the entire Cabinet that is here, I am grateful to you.  Some of you are staying and some of you are leaving, but I know the extraordinary sacrifices that you and my team have made to try to advance the cause of progress in this country, and Iím always going to be grateful to you for that.

To the Speaker of the House and Nancy Pelosi, to Democratic Leader Harry Reid, as well as Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, and to all the congressional leaders and all the members of Congress who are here -- I recognize that democracy is not always easy, and I recognize there are profound differences in this room, but I just want to say thank you for your service and I want to thank your families for their service, because regardless of our political persuasions and perspectives, I know that all of us serve because we believe that we can make America for future generations.

And I'm confident that we can act at this moment in a way that makes a difference for our children and our children's children.  I know that former President Carter, President Clinton, they understand the irony of the presidential office, which is, the longer you're there the more humble you become and the more mindful you are that it is beyond your poor powers individually to move this great country.  You can only do it because you have extraordinary partners and a spirit of good will, and most of all, because of the strength and resilience and fundamental goodness of the American people.

And so I would like to join all of you not only in toasting the extraordinary work that Chuck Schumer and Lamar Alexander and others have done to create this special day for us, but I also want to thank each and every one of you for not only your service in the past, but hopefully your service in the future as well.

And I would like to offer one last toast, and that is to my extraordinary wife, Michelle.  There is controversy about the quality of the President -- no controversy about the quality of our current First Lady.

Thank you, everybody.  God bless you, and God bless America.

Book/CDs by Michael E. Eidenmuller, Published by McGraw-Hill (2008)

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