Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Some Random Items About the Inauguration


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Well, it didn't go off without a few goofs, mistakes and snafus, but Barack Obama is now the 44th president of the United States. Chief Justice John Roberts screwed up the oath of office, which screwed up Obama, who ended up saying all the correct words but not in the order precise required. Obama also made a mistake very early in his inaugural address when he said, "Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath." Obama is indeed the 44th president, but only 43 Americans have taken the oath. Grover Cleveland (the baseball fan in me always seems to want to add "Alexander" to his name) served nonconsecutive terms -- he is the 22nd and 24th president. There were also a lot of problems with the logistics involved in cramming a couple of million people into the Mall to witness history. But if these are the worst mistakes over the next four years, we'll be very lucky indeed.

Senator Edward Kennedy suffered a seizure during the inaugural lunch and was taken to Washington Hospital Center. Senator Robert Byrd became "emotional" and was either escorted out of the room by security personnel or left on his own accord. The seizure was said to have been caused by "simple fatigue" and Kennedy is "doing well." He should be released later today.

Obama and his team got a bit of work done amidst all the ceremonies and balls. The first sign of this came at the official White House webpage which is now all Obama-y and missing a lot of stuff that was on there a few days ago lauding the former resident. Obama also took the time today to order federal regulators to stop work on President Bush's unfinished last-minute regulations and to urge military prosecutors to halt legal proceedings at Guantanamo Bay. Also, the Senate has confirmed seven Obama cabinet picks, but not Hillary. Senator John Cornyn is seeking more financial information about Bill's foundation.

Just to calm your fears, there was no giant attack in Washington Tuesday. The photo above is from the Boston Globe's "The Big Picture" photo-essay on "Inauguration Preparations." The photo by the AP's Sandy Huffaker shows model builder Gary McIntire putting the finishing touches on a Lego presidential inauguration scene on Thursday, Jan. 15, 2009 at Legoland California in Carlsbad, California.

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