Airdate: President Obama Inauguration

Barack Obama’s Inauguration is set to take place very early on the morning of Wednesday January 21 (Australian time).

Unlike the election result and victory speech, the Obama Inauguration takes place from 4am AEDT on January 21 (2am in WA).

ABC will screen it live from 3:30am AEDT (earlier in states outside this time zone. It will also have a highlights package at 12:30pm hosted by Barrie Cassidy in Washington.

SBS will also screen a highlights package at 12:30pm with Anton Enus.

By Wednesday morning we will probably have watched select moments on our breakfast television and morning programmes.

In the US official duties will take place beginning at about 10:30 a.m., when the Obamas visit the White House for the traditional tea before the president and president-elect take the motorcade the short distance to Capitol Hill where the swearing in will take place. There are other events throughout the day, including a long parade that will be televised by all the major networks.

ABC also has a documentary in the lead up to the occasion, Made in Chicago: The Making of Barack Obama at 9:50pm Monday January 19.

Also worth a mention is that this is the second time the ABC has gotten dates wrong when it comes to the dateline and the US election. Its Press Release has Wednesday January 20 instead of 21. Know how you feel guys…

SBS Press Release:
SBS is screening a one hour special covering the inauguration of the new President of the USA. The delayed coverage begins at 12.30pm on 21 January.

The special will be hosted by SBS World News Presenter Anton Enus and feature interviews with guests as well as stories from SBS Senior Correspondent Brian Thomson in Washington.

“The inauguration of a new US President is an historic moment in time. The ascent of Barack Obama to the Oval Office will be of interest to many Australians, just as it will be a significant milestone for Americans and the rest of the world,” Anton said.

“It will be fascinating to hear the newly sworn-in President’s first inauguration speech. The speech is bound to provide the world with greater understanding of his administration’s new directions.”

“The inauguration of the 44th President will also mean the departure of President George Bush. President Bush will complete his tenure as leader of the most powerful country in the world during a very challenging period in history – and history has not yet had the time to judge him,” he said.

Acting Director of SBS News and Current Affairs, Mark Boyd, said this special was testimony to SBS’s ongoing commitment to informing Australians about the world we live in.

“The world is a constantly changing place – for better and for worse. As those changes have been having a greater and greater impact on the lives of Australians, we feel it is important to provide coverage such as this,” he said.


ABC Press Release:

The Making of Barack Obama

9:50pm Mon Jan 19
Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, to a black Kenyan father and a white American mother from Kansas, President Elect Barack Obama was raised in Indonesia and then later in Hawaii by his maternal grandparents. But it was in Chicago that he was shaped, both socially and politically, and it is where he still lives today.

Chicago is the third largest city in the United States and has one of the largest concentrations of black Americans, most of whom arrived at the beginning of the 20th century, fleeing the racist laws of the South. It is a racially polarised town where whites live largely in the neighbourhoods to the north and blacks to the south, and it was in Chicago’s Southside that Barack Obama arrived in 1985. He was twenty-four years old and had just finished his studies in New York. He was searching for a direction in life, and a major historical event had just taken place – Harold Washington had been elected as the first black mayor of Chicago.

In Made in Chicago we look at the exceptional personal and political journey of Barack Obama through the eyes of those who have known him and worked with him since 1985. This very American story follows his progress as he rises from obscurity to become the leading candidate for the US Presidency, rallying millions of voters to elect him as the first African American US President in history – a culmination of the ongoing battle for racial equality in America fought by the Kennedys and Lyndon B Johnson.

Made in Chicago is an investigation that leads us across America, not just in the footsteps of Barack Obama, but those of all Americans who came to believe in him and identify with him. It is both the exceptional personal journey of one man and his political and social commitment, and an account of the fundamental changes facing American society as a whole.

ABC COVERAGE OF THE INAUGURATION OF PRESIDENT OBAMA Early Wednesday morning be part of history, as Barack Obama is inaugurated as the 44th President of the United States. ABC News provides unrivalled coverage with Barrie Cassidy in Washington presenting the inauguration ceremony and President Obama’s first speech live and uninterrupted on ABC1. ABC TELEVISION January 21 – 3.25am (AEDT) ABC News Special: The Inauguration of President Obama (ABC1) In a public ceremony at the Capitol building, Barack Obama will take the Oath of Office and deliver his Inauguration address to the American people. Dozens of invited guests and hundreds of thousands of people gathered in the Washington Mall will witness history as the first African American takes office as US President. The entire event will be broadcast live and uninterrupted on ABC1 with Barrie Cassidy live in Washington providing an overview and analysis.

5am – 6am (AEDT) ‘Made in Chicago’ A look at the personal and political journey of Barack Obama through the eyes of those who have known him and worked with him since 1985. (ABC1)
6am (AEDT) ABC News Breakfast : Inauguration Special (ABC2) ABC News Breakfast will broadcast a special news edition as President Obama makes his way from Washington’s Capitol building to the White House in a massive parade down the Mall. Barrie Cassidy will be live from the streets of Washington providing analysis and speaking to Americans on a historic day for the USA. 12.30pm (AEDT) The Inauguration of President Obama – Highlights (ABC1)

Barrie Cassidy presents an ABC News special featuring the highlights of the Inauguration of Barack Obama.


  1. Yeah there’s no doubt that all the networks will show clips of this, especially the morning shows. I’ll be keeping an eye out to watch it. Finally America has a chance to gain their reputation back with Barack Obama looking very promising. (However, it is kind of fun making fun of the Americans).

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