Obama's Second Inauguration Not As Thrilling As First - NBC Chicago
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Obama's Second Inauguration Not As Thrilling As First



    Don't expect President Barack Obama's second inauguration to be quite the spectacle of the first.

    While nearly 2 million people turned out to see Obama's swearing-in ceremony in 2009, this year's crowd is expected to top out at 800,000, according to District of Columbia officials.

    In response, the Inaugural Committee scaled back four days of festivities to three, partially because of the slowly recovering economy and a desire by planners to ease the security burden on law enforcement. The ceremony still will begin with a National Day of Service on Jan. 19 followed by Obama's oath of office Jan. 20 in a private ceremony.

    The big day comes Jan. 21 when Obama publicly takes his oath then appears with First Lady Michelle Obama for several Inaugural Balls. 

    "There certainly will not be the sort of exultation you saw four years ago," Mike Cornfield, a George Washington University political science professor, told the Associated Press.

    "This is not a change that commands people's interest automatically," Cornfield said. "It's a confirmation of power."

    The AP notes that plenty of hotel rooms still haven't been booked two weeks before the inauguration whereas some hotels sold out months in advance four years ago.