The big day is here. Barack Obama becomes the 44th U.S. president a few ticks before 9 a.m. Pacific time. Most TV networks will be live from Washington, D.C. at about 4 a.m., with watching parties and live events all over town cranking up about the time the Obamas arrive at the White House for coffee with the Bushes at 6:55 a.m. The ceremony on the west front of the Capitol begins at 7 with the military bands. Sen. Dianne Feinstein calls things to order, Orange County pastor Rick Warren gives the invocation and Aretha Franklin belts out some notes. Joe Biden raises his hand about 8:45, followed by Obama — who will put his hand on Abraham Lincoln's inaugural Bible and take the oath from Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr.
Some random notes:
The Presidential Inauguration Committee begins live-streaming the swearing-in ceremony at 8 a.m. at this link. Expect President Obama's inaugural address a little after 9 a.m. Pacific time. The parade doesn't get going until 11:30 or so.
Here's the rest of the official schedule as compiled by Andrew Malcolm at Top of the Ticket.
The L.A. Times dispatched Los Angeles-based writers Sandy Banks, Tina Daunt, Carla Hall, Robin Abcarian and Peter King — and photographer Kirk McCoy — to Washington. Scott Martelle, laid off last year, is on hand too and has a review of Obama books in the paper today.
The Daily News sent reporter Connie Llanos to Washington with a group of Van Nuys school kids who are attending the inauguration. Sister paper the San Gabriel Valley Tribune has business writer Ryan Carter there blogging.
Advancer on the Eli Broad party in Georgetown by Rick Orlov in the Daily News:
The billionaire philanthropist and his wife, Edythe, are hosting what is perhaps the most exclusive dinner of the week to salute their friends who are members of the new president's cabinet.
And, it is a long list of influential friends, starting with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and extending to Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Daschle, Education Secretary Arne Duncan, Agriculture Secretary Thomas Vilsack and economic advisers Paul Volcker, Larry Summers and Eric Lander....Among those are former President Bill Clinton, Obama adviser David Axelrod, retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark, opera's Placido Domingo, CNN's Larry King, talent agent Ari Emanuel, artist Jeff Koons and Villaraigosa.
A delegation from the Community Coalition in South L.A. is in Washington blogging and posting videos.
Clifford V. Johnson, a USC professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, blogs at Asymptotia: "Hope. This word has been used a lot in the last year or more. Sometimes it felt to me like it was overused, but now that the dust has settled, I think I’m quite sure that it is a good word to describe where we are, or what we have."
So many Los Angeles City Council members are at the inauguration there will be no meetings today or Wednesday.
It's all a little over the top for Mark Lacter at LA Biz Observed.
Andrew Breitbart is the angry conservative soldier fuming not so silently at Big Hollywood:
Many of the celebrities that were central to demonizing and making life impossible for President Bush for eight loathsome years NOW want to help with the heavy lifting of bringing America back together under President Barack Obama.....God bless, President Obama. Even though I didn’t vote for him, and disagree with much of his agenda, he has my best wishes and all of my best efforts.
But that doesn’t mean I will forgive and forget an era of narcissism, petty complaining and conspiracy theory peddling from the majority celebrity class that began well before Iraq...
The celebrity decadence during the “oppressive” Bush years was world class. The clubs raged. The boutique hotels rocked. The private jet industry at Van Nuys airport flourished. The party never stopped. And only a precious few (Thank you, dearly!!!) stepped up to support the American troops who have been valiantly fighting for Hollywood’s right to do lines off of each others’ buttocks at $10 million Hollywood Hills mansions....
They took the easy route. And blamed Bush for everything....Good luck, President Obama. The rest of you can go to hell.
Photo: Molly Riley / Reuters via Yahoo