President-elect Donald Trump is establishing a new precedent for the inauguration: He will take the oath of office on both the “Lincoln Bible” and one he was given as a boy in 1955.
Trump will pledge to protect and defend the Constitution on the same burgundy velvet-bound Bible Abraham Lincoln used for his inauguration in 1861, the Presidential Inaugural Committee announced, the Daily Mail reports.
President Barack Obama used the Lincoln Bible for both of his inaugurations.
Trump’s personal Bible is the one his mother gave him when he graduated from Sunday Church Primary School at First Presbyterian Church in Jamaica, New York, in 1955.
“In his first inaugural address, President Lincoln appealed to the ‘better angels of our nature,'” said Inaugural Chairman Tom Barrack. “As he takes the same oath of office 156 years later, President-elect Trump is humbled to place his hand on Bibles that hold special meaning both to his family and to our country.”
Chief Justice of the United States John Roberts will administer the oath of office to Trump.
Many hope the inauguration will bring the country together, following a bitterly fought campaign and scandal. The country is still reeling from revelations that Russia meddled with the course of the election, according to reports from the intelligence community.
Up to 40 House Democrats have stated they will not attend the inauguration following a recent clash between Trump and civil rights veteran Rep. John Lewis of Georgia, who does not consider Trump “a legitimate president.”
Trump showed his family Bible several times on the campaign trail. A few days before the Iowa caucuses, he spoke of its origins in a short video he posted on Facebook.
“I really appreciate the support given to me by the evangelicals,” Trump said. “They’ve been incredible. Every poll says how well I’m doing with them.”
He mentioned his mother gifted the Bible to him “many years ago.”
“In fact, it’s her writing right here. She wrote the name and my address and it’s just very special to me,” Trump said.
He brought the book along to the Values Voters Summit in September 2015.
“I brought my Bible. You know, it’s the First Presbyterian Church, Jamaica, and this was written by my mother, with my name, with my address, with everything,” Trump said as he showed the Bible to the crowd. “I saw this and I had to bring it.”
The Lincoln Bible was not Lincoln’s personal Bible. When Lincoln arrived in Washington for the swearing-in, he had none of his belongings with him, so the then-clerk of the Supreme Court, William Thomas Carroll, used one of his own office Bibles for the ceremony, CBS reported in 2009.
“That’s a very likely scenario for what happened,” Clark Evans of the Library of Congress then said. After Lincoln became president, Carroll signed and sealed the Bible. The Lincoln family donated the Bible to the Library of Congress.
Sources: Daily Mail, CBS / Photo credit: CNN