News

    Tight Security Expected for Bush Inauguration

    Security is expected to be very tight in Washington when President George Bush is inaugurated for a second term on January 20.  Security planners are concerned about terrorists and protesters.

    The president seems anxious to begin his second term and start tackling some of the campaign pledges he made to reform the tax system and the government pension program known as Social Security.

    "I like to confront problems," said Mr. Bush.  "I like to work with people so that we can say we left behind a better America after it is all said and done, and I do not have that much time here in Washington, so I am ready to work."

    But before the work can begin in earnest, the president must take the constitutionally required oath of office on January 20, an American political ritual that has taken place every four years since George Washington was sworn in as the nation's first president in 1789.

    This will be the first presidential inauguration since the 2001 terrorist attacks and security will be extremely tight.  Security officials are saying little about their plans to counter the threat of both terrorism and protesters, but thousands of police are expected to be on hand for the inauguration ceremony, parade, and formal balls.

    Anti-war activists are planning extensive protests around the inaugural.  Gael Murphy is with a group called Code Pink, Women for Peace.

    "I would say that it is going to be quite difficult to disrupt events," she noted.  "But I think that it is critical for our voices to be heard, not just for this administration to hear our voices, but for the rest of the world to know that we are still mobilized, that we are still opposing the Bush policies."

    Historically, presidential inaugurations have been opportunities for the incoming or re-elected president to heal the political divide from the election just past and unify the country.

    President Bush made an attempt at that four-years ago following his narrow victory over Al Gore.

    "And this is my solemn pledge.  I will work to build a single nation of justice and opportunity," he said.

    Mr. Bush won a more convincing victory this time, by winning 51-48 percent of the vote over Democrat John Kerry.

    Marvin Krantz is a historian at the Library of Congress in Washington.  He says many Americans view a presidential inauguration as an important symbol of the continuity of democracy.

    "But clearly, the presidential inauguration marks a kind of change and it is part and parcel of what we are as Americans because we accept this sense of change," he said.  "We know it is a legitimate change and we accept it, even in times of stress, we recognize this.  And those of us who might be in opposition who comes into office, he is still the president of all of us and we have to live under the new rules that are established."

    But some political analysts believe the president faces a daunting challenge in trying to bring the country together in the wake of another close election.

    Professor John White is an expert on U.S. presidents at Catholic University in Washington.

    "I am sure the president will try to do that [bring the country together] with this inauguration.  But given the deep divisions within the country, divisions that have only deepened in the past four years, I think it is going to be harder for him to try to bring the country together even though he won a decisive victory," said Mr. White.

    The president will take the oath of office around midday on January 20 at an outdoor ceremony in front of the U.S. Capitol building.  Mr. Bush will then review a parade that includes 10,000 marchers and features 45 marching bands.  In the evening, the president and First Lady Laura Bush will attend several inaugural balls where supporters will celebrate his re-election victory in November.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Testing Bamboo as Building Materiali
    X
    June 27, 2016 9:06 PM
    For thousands of years various species of bamboo - one of the world's most versatile plants - have been used for diverse purposes ranging from food and medicine to textiles and construction. But its use on a large scale is hampered because it's not manufactured to specific standards but grown in the ground. A University of Pittsburgh professor is on track to changing that. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Testing Bamboo as Building Material

    For thousands of years various species of bamboo - one of the world's most versatile plants - have been used for diverse purposes ranging from food and medicine to textiles and construction. But its use on a large scale is hampered because it's not manufactured to specific standards but grown in the ground. A University of Pittsburgh professor is on track to changing that. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Orphanage in Iraqi City Houses Kids Who Lost their Parents to Attacks by IS

    An orphanage in Iraqi Kurdistan has become home to scores of Yazidi children who lost their parents after Islamic State militants took over Sinjar in Iraq’s Nineveh Province in 2014. Iraqi Kurdish forces backed by the U.S. airstrikes have since recaptured Sinjar but the need for the care provided by the orphanage continues. VOA’s Kawa Omar filed this report narrated by Rob Raffaele.
    Video

    Video Re-Opening Old Wounds in a Bullet-Riddled Cultural Landmark

    A cultural landmark before Lebanon’s civil war transformed it into a nest of snipers, Beirut’s ‘Yellow House’ is once again set to play a crucial role in the city.  Built in a neo-Ottoman style in the 1920s, in September it is set to be re-opened as a ‘memory museum’ - its bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking the city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Brexit Resounds in US Presidential Contest

    Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is resounding in America’s presidential race. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump sees Britain’s move as an affirmation of his campaign’s core messages, while Democrat Hillary Clinton sees the episode as further evidence that Trump is unfit to be president.
    Video

    Video New York Pride March A Celebration of Life, Mourning of Loss

    At this year’s march in New York marking the end of pride week, a record-breaking crowd of LGBT activists and allies marched down Manhattan's Fifth Avenue, in what will be long remembered as a powerful display of solidarity and remembrance for the 49 victims killed two weeks ago in an Orlando gay nightclub.
    Video

    Video NASA Juno Spacecraft, Nearing Jupiter, to Shed Light on Gas Giant

    After a five-year journey, the spacecraft Juno is nearing its destination, the giant planet Jupiter, where it will enter orbit and start sending data back July 4th. As Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, the craft will pierce the veil of Jupiter's dense cloud cover to reveal its mysteries.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora