I have decided not to comment in the debate about George Bush taking his oath on the Bible. Instead, however, I'd like to ask a concrete question. In order for his inauguration to be valid, does he have to "swear" and end with "so help me God", or could he instead chose to repeat a non-religious version (I.E. "I, George Walker Bush, do SOLEMNLY AFFIRM...")?
In Canada, I think public officials have the choice of either swearing (a religious act) or solemnly affirming (a secular act) the promise. In the Czech Republic, the President must make a PROMISE in order to be validly president, but it's by constitutional definition a promise, not a religious oath.
As an aside question, I know that in the American military, you can either "swear" or "solemnly affirm" your promise. But are those who "solemnly affirm" exempted from saying "so help me God" at the end (In Canada they are)?