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The 2nd Obama Inauguration
President Barack Obama will be sworn in publicly outside the U.S. Capitol on Monday with all the traditional pomp, but he actually will have already officially been sworn in per the Constitution, which mandates that the president be sworn in on January 20.
As our president prepares for a second term, we can reflect on how the first four years included two Supreme Court nominees, multiple mass shootings and natural disasters, high unemployment, ending the Iraq war, as well as historic legislation with the Affordable Care Act and the death of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ Indeed America’s first black president has led our nation from a tough era into one that holds promise of our brightest future.
This time the inaugural crowds are expected to be smaller. But does that mean enthusiasm is diminished?
On Sunday, following a wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery, President Obama will be sworn in at the White House at 11:55 a.m. EST . and will repeat the procedure the next day in the public ceremony on a giant platform overlooking the National Mall.
The inauguration happens to befall on the national holiday honoring slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and the president is widely expected to highlight lessons from Dr. King’s era and will will place his left hand on two Bibles – one once owned by Abraham Lincoln and other by King during the oath. Saturday, the president volunteered at a school renovation project as he joined in a nationwide day of community service to celebrate King’s legacy.
Sunday’s events begin at 8 a.m. EST when Vice President Joe Biden is sworn in at a private ceremony at the Naval Observatory. The Obamas and Bidens will attend an evening inaugural reception at the National Building Museum.
On Monday, after the president’s address, Obama and Biden will ride in the inaugural parade, returning to the White House in a motorcade. They likely will get out to walk part of the way, waving to the crowd and surrounded by Secret Service agents. After seeing the rest of the parade from a viewing platform in front of the White House, the Obama’s will attend two official inaugural balls – compared to the 10 that were held in 2009.
Wherever you are, whatever you happen to be doing on inauguration day, be sure to take a moment and reflect on the national journey our nation has experienced under a historic leader. Our country will continue to move forward. God bless America!