Play the Slate News Quiz—Special Inauguration Edition!
With Jeopardy! superchampion Ken Jennings.
Ken Jennings competes against 'Watson' at a press conference to discuss the Man V. Machine 'Jeopardy!' competition at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center in 2011 in Yorktown Heights, New York.
Photo by Ben Hider/Getty Images.
Welcome back to Slate’s weekly news quiz. I’m your host, 74-time Jeopardy! winner Ken Jennings.
Every Friday I’ll be testing your knowledge with 12 challenging questions on the week’s news events, big and small, including happenings in science, sports, politics, and culture both high and low. The questions are multiple-choice, and time is of the essence: You have 30 seconds to answer, and as the seconds tick away, the question’s point value drops from 50 all the way down to zero, so you’ll want to click on your answer as fast as you possibly can. There’s no penalty for an incorrect answer, so feel free to take a guess if your puny human brain fails you.
At the end of the quiz, you’ll be able to compare your score with that of the average contestant, as well as to the score of a Slate staffer whom I’ve talked into taking the quiz on the record. This week’s quiz is a special inauguration edition, with trivia about the ups and downs of Obama’s first term. The contestant is Slate political reporter David Weigel.
Think you can ace my quiz and beat Weigel? Good luck!
Question 1 of 12
Four years ago, Obama was actually sworn in twice. What Inauguration Day gaffe led to a make-up oath of office being administered in the White House Map Room the following evening?
John Roberts asked the president to "execute [his office] faithfully"—not "faithfully execute" it, as the Constitution requires.
Question 2 of 12
The first bill signed into law by President Obama was named for Lilly Ledbetter and addressed what issue?
Ledbetter was a Goodyear employee whose discrimination suit was struck down by the courts in 2007.
Question 3 of 12
A dull 2009 CNBC interview with Obama on financial regulation took an unexpected turn when the president suddenly demonstrated what surprising skill?
Obama swatted at a fly on his left forearm, with lethal results. The next day, a miffed PETA sent the White House a trap that would provide a more "compassionate" housefly solution.
Question 4 of 12
Barack Obama is the first president to nominate two Supreme Court justices who were both what?
Obama's two first-term nominees were Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.
Question 5 of 12
Which first-term Obama accomplishment was punctuated by Vice President Biden helpfully noting "This is a big f--king deal" in front of a mic on live TV?
"Yes, Mr. Vice President, you're right ... " agreed press secretary Robert Gibbs on Twitter later that night.
Question 6 of 12
In 2011, the House of Representatives passed a series of resolutions questioning the president's authority to launch Operation Odyssey Dawn against what target?
Question 7 of 12
The Obamas' White House pet, a Portuguese water dog named Bo, was a gift from what other Beltway bigwig?
Question 8 of 12
In a May interview with Robin Roberts of ABC News, Obama announced that he now believed in what, an issue on which he had long claimed his attitudes were "evolving"?
Question 9 of 12
In his 2009 Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech in Oslo, Norway, what did Obama list as the "most profound" objection to his controversial honor?
The speech was a lengthy meditation on how to eliminate conflict in a violent world.
Question 10 of 12
In 2012, the Obama administration rolled out historic new "CAFE standards," designed to raise what to an average of 54.5 by the year 2025?
Question 11 of 12
When Bin Laden's death was reported to the White House Situation Room, the SEAL team used what code name for the al-Qaida leader, which later led to some criticism on racial grounds?
Several Native American tribes and the Senate Indian Affairs Committee requested that the name be changed to avoid besmirching the memory of "the legendary Apache warrior."
Question 12 of 12
On its "We the People" website, the Obama administration responds to any citizen petition that earns 25,000 signatures. Which of these requests has not earned a White House response?
The White House removed the Pokémon petition from its website, claiming that it violated their terms of participation.
You got 8 out of 12 answers correct in 20 minutes 30 seconds.
Slate political reporter
Quiz Template by Chris Kirk and Andrew Morgan
Ken Jennings was a 74-time Jeopardy! winner and is the author of three books, most recently Because I Said So!: The Truth Behind the Myths, Tales, and Warnings Every Generation Passes Down to Its Kids. Visit him at his website or follow him on Twitter.