New Smithsonian chief formally takes job

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Chief Justice John Roberts didn't have to worry about stumbling over an oath of office for the new Smithsonian chief Monday — all he had to do this time was hand over a key.

Roberts got the words a little off during President Barack Obama's oath of office last week, so he was perhaps relieved that tradition called for something simpler to formally install Wayne Clough as the 12th secretary of the Smithsonian Institution.

"I don't know who was responsible for that decision, but I like 'em," Roberts said, drawing laughs from a crowd of curators, researchers and staff.

Clough called on the world's largest museum complex to prepare for changes as a result of the nation's economic crisis. He also said American education and research has fallen behind.

"These forces are causing a sea change in our world and call for us to chart a bold path if we are to meet the challenges ahead," he said. "Long-established institutions are disappearing because they could not adapt at this crucial time in our nation's history."

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