‘Make America Great Again’ to be Trump’s inauguration ceremony theme

Washington, Jan 17 (IANS) The theme for Donald Trump’s inauguration as US President is to be the same as his campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again” — with official events kicking off from Thursday with a wreath laying ceremony.

President-elect Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence will participate in an over 200 years old tradition to take oath of office on Friday.

“We’re going to have a very, very elegant day. January 20 is going to be something that will be very, very special, very beautiful,” ABC news quoted the incoming President as saying of his big day.

Boris Epshteyn, the communications director for the Presidential Inaugural Committee, told Breitbart News Sunday that “things are shaping up wonderfully” ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Donald J. Trump, the incoming 45th President.

On January 19, Trump and Pence will lay wreaths at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery. Then there will be several marching band performances at the “Voices of the People”, held on a stage on the southwest end of the Reflecting Pool.

After “Voices of the People”, the President-elect and Vice President-elect will deliver remarks at the “Make America Great Again! Welcome” concert at the Lincoln Memorial.

According to the ABC news, singer Toby Keith, actor Jon Voight and the band 3 Doors Down are set to appear. The concert from 4-6 p.m. will conclude with a fireworks show.

On Friday morning, Trump, Pence and their families are scheduled to attend church services at St. John’s Episcopal near the White House.

Outgoing President Barack Obama and Trump will have coffee or tea at the White House before the New York billionaire’s swearing-in, according to Tom Barrack, chairman of the inaugural committee.

The two leaders and their wives will ride together to the Capitol.

The inauguration will take place on the West Lawn of the US Capitol.

The Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies (JCCIC) has released the programme of Trump and Pence’s swearing-in ceremonies at the Capitol.

The inauguration ceremony will kick off at 11.30 a.m. on Friday.

The DC Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management is planning for 800,000 to 900,000 people to attend the festivities.

The US Marine Band, which has played at every inauguration since Thomas Jefferson’s ceremony in 1801, will play the prelude.

If the ceremony follows tradition, inauguration announcer Steve Ray will introduce the past presidents, the families of Trump and Pence, and the congressional leaders in attendance, before announcing Pence and then finally Trump.

Missouri Representative, Senator Roy Blunt, will conduct the “Call to Order” and deliver welcoming remarks.

Following Blunt’s remarks, Cardinal Timothy Michael Dolan, Reverend Samuel Rodriguez of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference and the New Destiny Christina Center’s Pastor Paula White-Cain will deliver the readings and invocation.

In an interview with Catholic News Service, Cardinal Dolan said that for his reading he chose Wisdom, Chapter 9, King Solomon’s prayer for wisdom in leading Israel.

Later, Pence will take oath of office administered to him by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

After Pence is sworn in as the 48th Vice President, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir will perform, making it the sixth time the chorus has sung at an inauguration ceremony.

Then, Donald J. Trump will take the presidential Oath of Office. Chief Justice John Roberts will administer the oath.

“I do solemnly swear that I will execute the office of the president of the United States faithfully, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, defend, and protect the Constitution of the United States. So help me God,” Trump will say.

The Marine Band will then play “Hail to the Chief” and Trump will receive a 21-gun salute.

Trump, the 45th President of the US by this point, will then deliver his inaugural address to the masses gathered at the Capitol.

His speech, which he has been working on with his policy aide Stephen Miller, will be “short”, historian Douglas Brinkley, who met Trump, said.

Next, Rabbi Marvin Hier of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, Reverend Franklin Graham of Samaritan’s Purse and The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, and Bishop Wayne T. Jackson of Great Faith Ministries International will wrap with readings and the benediction.

To conclude the ceremony proceedings, 16-year-old Jackie Evancho will sing the national anthem.

A runner-up on the show “America’s Got Talent”, Evancho has sung at the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony in 2010 and at the 2015 “World Meeting of Families” in Philadelphia, which Pope Francis attended.

Trump and Pence are expected to attend the Congressional Lunch, a tradition since President Dwight D. Eisenhower, hosted by the JCCIC.

The two will then join the inaugural parade down Pennsylvania Avenue from the Capitol to the White House, leading the procession of over 8,000 parade participants.

President Jimmy Carter was the first to walk in the inaugural parade and since then, the presidents have ridden in limos and walked part of the parade route.

Steve Ray and CEO of the presidential inaugural committee Sarah Armstrong on Monday said the parade would last an hour and a half, shorter than parades of the past.

Talladega College, a historically black college in Alabama, is sending its marching band to perform in the inaugural parade, despite protests by some alumni and members of the public, the ABC reported.

To celebrate the incoming President’s inauguration, there will be three official inaugural balls.

The two main balls will be held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Centre, with guests from across the country.

The invitation-only Salute to Our Armed Services Ball, in honour of the military, first responders and other service personnel, takes place at the National Building Museum.

President Barack Obama’s previous inauguration themes were “A New Birth of Freedom” (2009) and “Faith in America’s Future” (2013).

–IANS

py/rn

Top