President Trump takes on the White House
February 9, 2017
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On Jan. 20 at 12:00 p.m., America was given a new leader, President Donald John Trump. Seeing a president take the oath is not something that everyone can say they have done, but senior Christina Wells watched it happen live.
“We were really far away, but we saw him through the jumbo screen,” Wells said. “It was a life changing experience. We saw history. I think it was really cool.”
Wells was a part of an Envision program two years ago that took her to Chicago for a preview of what the medical field would be like through hands-on experience and college tours. They then sent her a letter inviting her to the inauguration with them. She spent four days with the group listening to guest speakers and working on projects, and then they all viewed the inauguration from the National Mall.
“I think that the attendance to an Inauguration, while not required, is a significant event for a citizen,” AP US History teacher Vita Simmons said. “It provides a first hand account of the peaceful transfer of power that has uniquely defined our process since the late 1700s.”
Attendance numbers at the inaugurations are not very consistent. At his first inauguration in 2009, former President Obama had 1.8 million people there versus his second inauguration that had only 1 million. Trump is said to have had anywhere from 300,000 to 400,000 coming close to the crowd President George W. Bush had at both his inauguration ceremonies (According to politifact.com). However there has been some debate with the media on the final numbers.
“I know in my own classes that certain inaugural addresses reference and reflect significant turning points in American history,” Simmons said. “The inaugural address of FDR, Kennedy, and Reagan are noteworthy ones, which are annualized in my class.”
Renowned announcer Charles Brotman has spoken at every inauguration parade since President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1957, but this year he did not introduce President Trump. Instead Steve Ray, a Washington-based freelance announcer, introduced Trump as the new President. Followed by a 16-minute inaugural address about his populist campaign themes where he promises to drain the Washington swamp and revive manufacturing and the middle class.