Ronald Reagan’s Signed Inaugural Oath of Office

These are the very words he used at his Inauguration: “I, Ronald Wilson Reagan, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Extremely uncommon, being just the third Reagan signed oath of office we have seen

 

Ronald Reagan was a transformational president, and that transformation began on January 20, 1981, the day he was inaugurated as President of the United States.

In foreign affairs, his leadership led to the successful resolution of the...

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Ronald Reagan’s Signed Inaugural Oath of Office

These are the very words he used at his Inauguration: “I, Ronald Wilson Reagan, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Extremely uncommon, being just the third Reagan signed oath of office we have seen

 

Ronald Reagan was a transformational president, and that transformation began on January 20, 1981, the day he was inaugurated as President of the United States.

In foreign affairs, his leadership led to the successful resolution of the decades-old Cold War. As the Soviet Union disappeared into the mists of history, Reagan noted that democracy had prevailed in its long “battle of values” with collectivism. British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher wrote that Reagan had “achieved the most difficult of all political tasks: changing attitudes and perceptions about what is possible. From the strong fortress of his convictions, he set out to enlarge freedom the world over at a time when freedom was in retreat—and he succeeded.”

In domestic affairs, his presidency brought an end to the New Deal policies of government programs to fix social ills. His “small government” philosophy triumphed, reducing the role of government in all spheres. He reduced taxes, making the top income tax rate, which was 70% when he took office, 28% when he left. He got skyrocketing interest rates in check and kept them there, which led to a record period of peacetime economic growth.

Reagan also left a monumental political legacy. After he was reelected in a 49-state landslide in 1984, it became clear that Democrats would be unlikely to return to the White House under a traditional liberal banner. This paved the way for “centrist” capture of the Democratic Party, which remains in place today. He had an even greater impact within his own party. He made the Republican Party a conservative one, and set its course for half a century and more. The United States would be a different place had Ronald Reagan not been President.

The United States Constitution provides that, at every inauguration, the incoming president take the following oath of office: “I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

Document signed, being a souvenir copy of his oath of office, dated Washington, D.C., January 20, 1981. He signed with his full name, Ronald Wilson Reagan, just as he spoke those exact words while reciting the oath at his inauguration. We doubt that this copy was one he signed on his inauguration day, but it could have been any time thereafter.

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