Obama replaces Bush Oval Office rug with new quote-emblazoned carpet

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      Jon Ward

      Jon Ward covers the White House and national politics for The Daily Caller. He covered the last two years of George W. Bush's presidency and the first year of Barack Obama's presidency for The Washington Times. Prior to moving to national politics, Jon worked for the Times' city desk and bureaus in Virginia and Maryland, covering local news and politics, including the D.C. sniper shootings and subsequent trial, before moving to state politics in Maryland. He and his wife have two children and live on Capitol Hill. || <a href="mailto:jw@dailycaller.com">Email Jon</a>

Iraq policy was not the only Bush-era relic that President Obama moved on from Tuesday, as he announced the next phase of operations in the country the U.S. invaded in 2003.

The White House also announced Tuesday that Obama has finally, after more than a year and a half in office, gotten rid of former President George W. Bush’s Oval Office rug and put in place his own.

Bush famously loved his Oval Office rug — designed by then-First Lady Laura Bush — which he said expressed optimism by a design that resembled a radiant sun. Obama took to the rug as well, so much so that Bush confidantes gave hints over the past year that the former president was eager for the current Oval Office occupant to get on with obtaining his own carpet so he could get his back.

Obama’s Oval floor piece is unique in that he chose quotes by past presidents, as well as civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr.,* to be part of the design. The five quotes are as follows, according to the White House:

  • “The Only Thing We Have to Fear is Fear Itself” – President Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • “The Arc of the Moral Universe is Long, But it Bends Towards Justice” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • “Government of the People, By the People, For the People” – President Abraham Lincoln
  • “No Problem of Human Destiny is Beyond Human Beings” – President John F. Kennedy
  • “The Welfare of Each of Us is Dependent Fundamentally Upon the Welfare of All of Us” – President Theodore Roosevelt

Obama’s wheat, cream and blue colored rug was made and donated by the Scott Group, an American carpet manufacturer headquartered in Grand Rapids, Mich, which also produced the Oval Office carpet for former President Bill Clinton.

The new rug was installed as part of an Oval Office makeover while the president was on vacation with his family in Martha’s Vineyard during the second half of August. Obama replaced much of the furniture and the wallpaper, installing new couches, a new desk chair, two new lamps and a new coffee table. The two arm chairs in front of the fireplace were reupholstered with caramel-colored leather.

Obama will continue to use the desk that Bush used, which has been used by many presidents, called the Resolute. The desk was given by British Queen Victoria in 1880 as a gift to Rutherford B. Hayes, the 19th president of the United States.

The redecoration was paid for by the White House Historical Association through donations from the Presidential Inaugural Committee, which is funded entirely through private donations.

C-SPAN interviewed Obama on Aug. 12 about the Oval Office, before the redecoration took place, and released the 10-minute interview on Tuesday evening. Oddly, Obama notes that he has not yet put his personal stamp on the place, but makes no mention of the changes that would be coming a little more than a week later.

“The truth of the matter is, we have not yet redecorated this room. The tradition is that every president comes in and they rework it. Given that we are in the midst of some very difficult economic times, we decided to hold off last year in terms of making some changes,” Obama told C-SPAN’s Brian Lamb.

Obama then notes that he made a few small changes, like adding a bust of Martin Luther King, Jr. But the implication is that there are no major redecoration changes coming.

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*The article originally stated incorrectly that all quotes were from past presidents.

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  • nigheve

    I wish he governed like he decorates.

  • jonavark

    movin’ on up.. to the west wing.. to deeeelux apartment in the sky.. movin on up.. hmm hmm hmmm hmmm..

  • des1

    Tucker, your site sucks ass! I am beyond sick and tired of having to repost 5 to 10 times per post because it keeps telling me I’m posting “too fast.” I know I’m not the only one.

    Why is it that your people are too incompetent to fix this?

    • jonavark

      Go Des!

    • The_anniebanannie

      Neil, another “dumb and unhelpful” comment?

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  • sunnyr

    They can take it with them when they leave in 2012! I am counting the days!!!!

  • misanthropicus

    Another confirmation that Al and Meg Bundy moved in the Oval Office – such a crappy decoration! Tv couches, something allways Michelle wanted in her comfort zone – coffe table, for her glossies and for Barry’s remote, then napkins – hey, delivery pizza can be messy.

    Low class residents the White House has -

    • thephranc

      That coffee table just screams Ikea.

  • libertyatstake

    So, now the rug is like a teleprompter – must make Barry feel right at home.

    “Because the Only Good Progressive is a Failed Progressive”

  • truebearing

    I liked it better before Obama started screwing with it, of course you could say that about everything he’s done.

    That carpet looks suspiciously like camel hair.

  • annbiz

    I really loved Laura’s rug. Where does everything go that is replaced (when not necessary to do so) Hope Laura gets it back…..perhaps for the Library.