The 45th President of the United States began the memorable day by tweeting about his forthcoming oath to office, stating, “It all begins today… THE MOVEMENT CONTINUES – THE WORK BEGINS!” He then attended a church service before being greeted by Barack and Michelle Obama at the White House.
Resistance was rife against the new presidency. Reports on the number of protests span from 350 to 600 worldwide, which would make it the largest number of global coordinated protests since those against the Iraq War in 2003.
The U.S. Marine Band opened the ceremony at 11.30am (EST), followed by readings. Vice-President Mike Pence then took his oath to office, with boos and chants of discontent audible from the crowds. President Donald Trump was sworn into office at midday (EST).
The new U.S. President’s inauguration speech called for rebuilding America, in line with his campaign slogan “Make America Great Again”. He stressed his aim of “transferring power from Washington DC and giving it back to… the people”, and an “America first” philosophy towards foreign policy. The president also reaffirmed his promise to take firm action against radical Islam, ending the speech with patriotic rhetoric and declaring, “you will never be ignored again.”
As Trump was sworn in, The White House website’s pages on Climate Change and LGBT rights were removed, with new pages created on topics ranging from American oil and gas to strengthening the military.
The parade followed, after which President Trump and his First Lady, Melania, were driven in limousines to the White House, with the headlights flashing American red white and blue.
Amongst the crowds, those against the Trump presidency appeared to heavily outnumber his supporters. Violence flared on the streets of Washington throughout the day: a limousine was torched and Starbucks and McDonald’s shop windows were smashed whilst police deployed teargas and numerous arrests were made. Peaceful protests also occurred, for instance Black Lives Matter and No DAPL protesters blockaded the entrances to the inauguration.
Donald Trump’s highly-anticipated inauguration was estimated to have a turnout of 800,000: 1 million less than his predecessor, Barack Obama, in 2009.
Even the Press appeared to remove an nonpartisan stance upon reporting Trump’s oath into office, as Ian Woods from Sky News sardonically tweeted:
The “Make America Great Again” concert was held the night before the inauguration ceremony, where President Donald Trump was seen singing the lyrics “ain’t the sharpest tool in the shed” as 3 Doors Down covered Smashmouth’s “All Star”. Toby Keith, Sam Moore, DJ Ravidrums and The Piano Guys also performed.