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Swear in their cabinet and try to survive the previous staffs' pranks
Swear in their cabinet and try to survive the previous staffs' pranks

The newly sworn-in president has to fill out their administration almost immediately, since the previous cabinet traditionally resigns. Confirmation hearings begin before the inauguration, and voice votes are taken in the Senate, usually with unanimous consent given, and the new president typically swears in their cabinet in one large ceremony. For instance, President Obama was able to swear in seven nominees the day after his inauguration, with most others taking their oaths the following week. Other presidents have had varied records on how quickly their cabinets were sworn in. Jimmy Carter's entire cabinet was in place within a week, but only half of George HW Bush's was.

To add a little fun (or stress) to the new President's first week in office, the outgoing staffers like to blow off a little steam (especially if their party lost the election) by pranking the incoming staffers of the White House. After President Clinton left the White House, his staffers went as far as destroying property during their transition in 2001. They took all the "W" keys off the keyboards so that George W. Bush wouldn't be able to type his name (lol) and there were also reports of broken glass desktops, tangled phone lines, and "Gore 2000" stickers left in paper trays. To be fair though, the Clinton staffers pointed out that when they took office in 1992, Bush staffers had done the same thing, covering the office with Bush/Quayle stickers and more.

Learn how the nuclear codes work
Learn how the nuclear codes work

One of the president's biggest responsibilities involves having the codes needed to launch nuclear missiles. While the winning campaign team might be partying it up in Washington, the president-elect is getting extensive training in the particulars of a nuclear weapons launch, though he can't actually launch an attack until after the inauguration is over (should it be necessary, the sitting president can still launch an attack). The process for launching a nuclear missile is extremely complex and depends on a precise sequence of events. During the inauguration, two aides carry two different "nuclear football" briefcases with the necessary attack protocols. One briefcase is for the old president, and one is for the president-elect, which goes live the moment the old one goes dead.

In order to authorize a launch, the nuclear football must be opened and then the president will be given attack options. In turn, the president has to give a special code, which is changed every day, and printed on a card with dummy codes. That card, called the Gold Codes, is carried on the president at all times. Complicated, right? Apparently in 1989 Ronald Reagan wanted the procedure to be as simple as handing over a card with codes on it, until Colin Powell persuaded him not to.

Moving (in and out) of the White House
Moving (in and out) of the White House

The President and First Family usually start moving out of the White House a few days early to give the 93-person staff enough time to prepare for the next First Family. This transition between families has to be done in a matter of hours and no outside help is hired due to security reasons. The new President and his family usually stay in the Blair House in the days leading up to Inauguration Day (which is also move in day). The Blair House, built in 1824, was purchased by the government in 1942 and actually has more square footage than the actual White House, made of four connected townhouses in D.C. The house also doubles as the president's official guest house, used by visiting foreign leaders and the likes.

The Secret Service supervises the new First Family's move into the White House, but the president-elect pays for it either out of their own personal wealth or with campaign funds. All in all, the entire process takes about six hours, though sometimes the former First Family is still moving things out at the same time. For instance, President Bush was having boxes moved and paintings wrapped during his final days, while Ronald Reagan's Oval Office only had a desk left by his last day.

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