United States President Donald Trump has given a makeover to the Oval Office within hours of moving in to the White House as he reinstalled a bust of former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and introduced some other changes.
The bust was removed to outside the Treaty Room in the private residence of the White House from the Oval Office in 2009 under Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama. The move had sparked conservative ire early in Obama’s administration.
Trump, however, has retained the bust of Martin Luther King Jr, brought to the Oval Office by Obama.
This was one of the most notable changes as a group of White House pool reporters entered the Oval Office for Trump to make his first few signatures on documents and an executive order.
New White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer tweeted a picture of the bust of Martin Luther King Jr after some media reports and a White House pool report incorrectly mentioned that it has been removed. The report was quickly corrected.
“(This is) a reminder of the media danger of tweet first check facts later,” Spicer tweeted.
Inside the Oval Office, Trump is also using the famous Resolute desk, an 1,880 gift from Queen Victoria and first used in the Oval by John F Kennedy. It is now being used by its seventh president.
According to a White House pool report, the drapes in the Oval Office have been replaced. This morning they were crimson. Now they are gold.
Additionally, a bust of Teddy Roosevelt is in one of the bookshelves. Some of the artwork have also been swapped.
According to a CNN report, some paintings have also been replaced by Trump, including two by the door by Edward Hopper.
Trump has held onto “The Avenue in the Rain,” by the American impressionist Childe Hassam, from Obama’s Oval Office, and the back wall still hangs a painting of George Washington above the fireplace.
The Swedish Ivy on the mantlepiece is also retained, the news channel said.
Notably, there was a lot of flak for Obama when he replaced bust of Churchill with that of Martin Luther King Jr.
“There are only so many tables where you can put busts -- otherwise it starts looking a little cluttered,” Obama had said at London news conference last April.
“And I thought it was appropriate, and I suspect most people here in the United Kingdom might agree, that as the first African American President, it might be appropriate to have a bust of Dr Martin Luther King in my office to remind me of all the hard work of a lot of people who would somehow allow me to have the privilege of holding this office,” he had said then.
Image: US President Trump shakes hands with House Speaker Paul Ryan as he is joined by the Congressional leadership and his family while he formally signs his cabinet nominations into law, in the President's Room of the Senate, at the Capitol, following his swearing-in. Photograph: J Scott Applewhite/Pool/Reuters