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President George W. Bush

2005 Presidential Inauguration

On Jan. 20, 2005, a crowd of about 500,000 people faced the biting cold and snow to view the $40 million inauguration ceremony and parade for President George W. Bush sworn in for a second presidential term. Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist held a Bush family Bible as the president took the oath of office, vowing to spread "freedom through all the world." In his brief inaugural address, President Bush told Americans that parts of the world "simmer in resentment and tyranny" and that America's ultimate goal is the defeat of tyranny. He promised to stand behind the oppressed people of the world. "The survival of liberty in our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other lands," he said. The BBC's Rob Watson in Washington points out that unlike four years ago, the president enters his second term after a comfortable election victory, but he still faces many challenges. The war in Iraq is growing more and more unpopular and opinion polls suggest Mr. Bush's overall approval ratings are lower than any other re-elected president in recent times. Protesters everywhere expressed this sentiment but still didn't manage to lower the patriotic morale in Washington, D.C.

Among the nine official inaugural balls attended by the First Couple, the Bush family attended a "Black Tie and Boots Ball," a formal event with a Texan twist to it hosted by the Texas State Society. The President and First Lady Laura attended the gala where 10,000 guests sported cowboy hats and boots in addition to formalwear.

At the Constitution Ball, the president said, "I love my wife. I'm looking forward to dancing with her maybe for the first time in four years . . . We're having the time of our lives."

Later, after the sound of trumpets introduced he and Laura at the Democracy Ball he said, "Thanks for letting Laura and me crash the party. I hope you've enjoyed this inauguration as much as we have."

Laura Bush donned a stunning Oscar de la Renta silver-blue tulle gown embroidered with bugle beads and outlined in Austrian crystals. She chose three American designers to create gowns and suits for the various events celebrating the inauguration. In addition to Oscar de la Renta, Carolina Herrera and Peggy Jennings designed her other outfits. Twin daughters, Jenna and Barbara, selected Badgley Mischka, Lela Rose, Derek Lam and Oscar de la Renta to create their inaugural attire. They appeared in beautiful gowns by Badgley Mischka later in the evening.

The gathering was a good reminder of America's strong and enduring patriotism.
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