Millions to witness Obama`s swearing-in at US Capitol today
Washington: After a simple quiet White House swearing-in ceremony, US President Barack Obama will take oath again on Monday in a more spectacular public inauguration on the steps of the US Capitol.
The public inauguration ceremony would be marked by a Congressional luncheon after the swearing-in, followed by a traditional White House parade and festivities that would include two inaugural balls and performances by Beyonce, Katy Perry and Stevie Wonder.
The crowd that will witness the grand event is expected to reach into the hundreds of thousands, add to it the millions of television audience.
Obama was officially sworn-in as US president yesterday as the US constitution demands the president to start the term on January 20, which fell on a Sunday this time.
Before Obama, Ronald Reagan was the last president to do the same, for his second inauguration in 1985. Before him Dwight D. Eisenhower did so in his second term in 1957.
Donning a blue suit and a matching striped tie, Obama was present along with his wife Michelle and daughters Malia and Shasha when Chief Justice John Roberts administered the oath of office to Obama in the Blue Room of the White House.
On Monday`s swearing in, Obama is to use two Bibles - one from President Lincoln and the other from the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr, when he takes the Presidential oath that says, "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of president of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."
Obama`s inaugural speech on Monday is assumed to be dominated by the economy, terrorism and more importantly by the topic of gun control laws and immigration reforms which he would seek to be passed in the Congress.
For Monday’s public inauguration, the preparations included the flag-draped stands ready outside the Capitol and the tables set inside for a traditional lunch with lawmakers. Across town, a specially made reviewing stand rested outside the White House gates for the president and guests to watch the traditional parade down Pennsylvania Avenue.
At a reception Sunday night, Obama told supporters the inauguration is a celebration of "this incredible nation that we call home," not the election results.
"Let`s make sure to work as hard as we can to pass on an America that is worthy not only of our past but also of our future," he said.
If Obama needed a reminder of the challenges he faces, he got one from half-way around the globe. An Algerian security official disclosed the discovery of 25 additional bodies at a gas plant where radical Islamists last week took dozens of foreign workers hostage.
With Agency Inputs
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