Technically, President Barack Obama took the oath of office at the official swearing-in ceremony in the Blue Room of the White House on Sunday, January 20th at noon. Joe Biden was sworn in at 8:15 a.m. in a separate ceremony at the Naval Observatory, the official residence of the vice president. The Constitution requires that the president and vice president take office by noon on Jan. 20, which is Sunday, but it has become a tradition not to hold the festivities surrounding the event on a Sunday. So both men will be sworn in twice.
The main event of the next few days will be the public swearing-in ceremony. Washington has been preparing for it for the last several weeks. It will be replete with pomp and circumstance, and even a performance by Beyonce at 11:30 a.m. EST on Monday.
Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. will administer the presidential oath of office to Obama and Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor will administer the vice presidential oath to Biden. Obama will then deliver his inaugural address, the content of which is still veiled in secrecy. Kelly Clarkson will perform “My Country Tis of Thee,” James Taylor will take on “America the Beautiful” and Beyonce, a prominent supporter during Obama’s reelection campaign, will perform the national anthem.
That event will be followed by the inaugural parade, which will begin at 2:35 p.m. EST, running along Pennsylvania Avenue and featuring Obama, Biden and their wives along with a number of floats and vehicles accompanying the presidential escort.
This weekend, dozens of health and safety inspectors converged upon D.C.’s fleet of food trucks to inspect them for any form of hazards, including food-borne illnesses.
According to The Washington Post, inspectors on the street just outside Union Station checked for unsanitary kitchen conditions, malfunctioning generators and leaky propane tanks. According to U.S. Food and Drug Administration food specialist Mario Seminara, these hazards could cause “unintentional” harm, such as food poisoning, fires and explosions.
“Our process plays a vital role in national security,” said Robert Sudler, the program manager of the food safety division of the D.C. Health Department, who was supervising the inspections. “Citizens and visitors could be exposed to any number of fatal threats.”
Of 39 food trucks approved to serve food near the Capitol on Inauguration Day, including some vendors from New York, Oklahoma and Arizona, 19 will be serving within the security perimeter along the parade route on Pennsylvania Avenue. The remaining trucks will be serving near Union Station, the D.C. Armory and Nationals Park.
Health and safety officials inspected the trucks Friday and Saturday, and the Secret Service is expected to conduct the final sweep of the trucks late Sunday night. The trucks then will be quarantined in the “clean zone” around the Capitol until Monday morning, when the festivities — and the eating — can begin.
The vendors will be required to remain within the secured areas for the duration of the event. Some are concerned they may run out of food, because they will not be allowed to return to their kitchens to restock their food trucks.
“If you sell out, you sell out,” said Lisa Davis, a Health Department official who coordinated the inspections.
Aliyyah Baylor, co-owner of Harlem’s Make My Cake, who left New York before dawn for the inspection, was tentatively confident. “I have 5,000 cupcakes and 1,000 sweet-potato cheesecakes,” she said. “That has to be enough. Right?”
Read the entire story at The Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/inauguration/inaugural-food-trucks-get-security-sweep–for-fire-poison-and-tummy-terrorists/2013/01/19/bde56f98-60ba-11e2-a389-ee565c81c565_story.html