Trump sworn in as 45th President of the United States
BY MANAGING NEWS EDITOR, , COPY DESK CHIEF, , ASSOCIATE NEWS EDITOR AND , MANAGING MOSAIC EDITOR,
Texas native Billie Jean Clouse, 55, sold her car and canceled a scheduled surgery to witness what she anticipated to be a momentous occasion in American history.
Unhappy with her experience with the Affordable Care Act (ACA), taxation and immigration policy under the outgoing presidency, Clouse traveled from Fort Worth to Washington, D.C. to attend the event.
“I had to come here to see my president,” Clouse said.
Around noon on Friday, Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States in the nation’s capital on the same Bibles used during Abraham Lincoln’s inauguration 156 years prior.
Echoing the slogan that carried him throughout his campaign, “Make America Great Again,” President Trump detailed his mission to bring back jobs, strengthen infrastructure, tighten border security and revamp the American education system.
“Together we will make America strong again, we will make America wealthy again, we will make America proud again, we will make America safe again, and yes, together, we will make America great again,” he said as the crowd applauded and chanted the final phrase in unison along with him.
Although protests and political demonstrations took place throughout the city, the atmosphere amongst the ticket holders in the National Mall’s standing area was largely celebratory.
One of the ticket holders, Lance Ballenger, 47, said he was unhappy with America’s common core curriculum, citing his recent decision to send his three children to private school. He felt his family was not getting as much out of public education in their area as they were putting in.
After following Trump’s campaign, the family was ready to usher their candidate of choice into office.
“[We’re] excited to end it here today,” said Lance’s wife, Angela Ballenger, 48.
Coming from their hometown of Santa Rosa, Calif., the Ballengers and their children traveled across the country to be take part in the inaugural ceremonies.
Overlooking a sea of red hats, Trump received cheers from the crowd as he delivered his first address as President — one which was unprecedentedly critical of the country’s current state.
“This American carnage stops right here and stops right now,” he said.
Past presidents Barack Obama, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, as well as the 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, were all in attendance, according to The New York Times.
The news outlet also reported that over four dozen Democrats from the House of Representatives decided not to attend the inauguration. Boycotts aside, there were many other means of protest displayed at Friday’s ceremonies.
On the lawn of the National Mall, Mark Licciardi, 19, stood with a friend, each holding one end of a banner that read, “No KKK No Fascists USA [sic].”
The Parsippany, NJ native said he and his friend had been threatened with physical harm by some crowd members who disagreed with them, including some that claimed to be affiliated with the Ku Klux Klan (KKK).
According to Licciardi, his and his friend’s efforts were made worthwhile by those who approached them with gratitude for sharing their opinion. Additionally, Licciardi said that some who disagreed did so in a respectful manner.
The main concern with Trump’s presidency that motivated Licciardi to attend the event was a campaign that he thought was “at times, explicitly racist, at other times ‘wink-wink’ racist.”
Despite wide reports of Trump receiving low approval ratings, especially when compared to his predecessor, Trump promised on Friday to be the voice of the citizens that he called the nation’s “forgotten” people, as he did during his campaign trail.
Although Trump did not specify to whom he was referring, he was highly favored amongst voters who felt that previous administrations had failed them, according to the Brookings Institute.
In his closing remarks, Trump vowed to serve not some, but all Americans during his presidency.
“I will fight for you with every breath in my body,” he said. “I will never let you down.”