Clinton at inaugural to ‘honor our democracy’
WASHINGTON — The Latest on Donald Trump’s inauguration as the 45th president of the United States (all times EST):
Hillary Clinton says she’s attending Donald Trump’s inauguration to “honor our democracy.”
Clinton made the comment on Twitter Trump took the oath of office. Hillary Clinton and former President Bill Clinton are both in attendance.
Here’s what Clinton is saying: “I’m here today to honor our democracy & its enduring values. I will never stop believing in our country & its future.”
President Barack Obama and his successor, Donald Trump, are departing the White House to head to Trump’s inauguration.
The pair got into a limousine that will take them to the Capitol.
Also on their way are Vice President Joe Biden, first lady Michelle Obama and Trump’s wife, Melania (meh-LAH’-nee-ah).
Crowds on the National Mall — where people without tickets can watch the inauguration — are growing steadily.
But less than two hours before the swearing-in, there are still wide swaths of empty space. There are strong suggestions that the crowds will not match President Barack Obama’s first inaugural eight years ago.
Some people were prevented by security barriers from getting closer to the Capitol despite having plenty of space in front of them.
The grass on the Mall was protected by white plastic and there were some muddy spots amid intermittent rain.
Most of the Donald Trump backers who are walking to the inauguration past Union Station in Washington are trying to ignore protesters outside the train station.
Then there’s Doug Rahm, who engaged in a lengthy and sometimes profane yelling match with protesters.
“Get a job,” Rahm said. “Stop crying snowflakes, Trump won.”
Rahm — who’s from Philadelphia and does high-rise restorations, is with Bikers for Trump. He says the protesters should get behind the new president.
He says, “This is unite America day.”
President Barack Obama has left a letter for his successor in the Oval Office before departing the White House — as is the tradition from one president to the next.
The White House is providing no details about what Obama conveyed to Donald Trump.
Obama campaigned vigorously against Trump. But the president and president-elect have had regular phone conversations since the election, with the president offering guidance and advice.
Belgium’s prime minister hopes Donald Trump will uphold NATO’s security guarantees and live up to the expectations of the American people.
Charles Michel says in a statement before Trump takes the oath of office that “it is essential that our engagement is maintained” to guarantee peace and stability through NATO.
Trump has called NATO “obsolete” and says European members aren’t paying their fair share.
Michel’s statement contains no congratulations. He does say “the expectations of the American people are high” and hopes Trump “will be able to deliver.”
Michel also says the European Union is entering a new era and it’s his belief “that Europe more than ever needs to defend its own agenda and interests.”
A high-profile Republican congressman says he would have attended the inauguration if Democrat Hillary Clinton won the election.
But Utah’s Jason Chaffetz (CHAY’-fits) — a persistent Clinton investigator — says he would have been thinking: “Here we go again. I’d be so distraught.”
He also says, “It was never an easy or predictable path to the White House, but here’s Donald Trump.”
More than 50 House Democrats are planning to boycott the ceremony. Some are citing Trump’s criticism of John Lewis, the Georgia congressman and civil rights leader who’s questioned Trump’s legitimacy to be the next president.
The White House says members of the residence staff have presented President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama with two American flags that were flown atop the building.
One of the flags was flown on the first day of Obama’s presidency. The other was flown on his final morning as president.
The Obamas are preparing to depart the White House for the last time as president and first lady when they head to Donald Trump’s inauguration.
President Barack Obama and the first lady Michelle Obama are welcoming President-elect Donald Trump and his wife, Melania (meh-LAH’-nee-ah), to the White House.
The Obamas have greeted the Trumps at the grand North Portico, the column-lined entrance facing Pennsylvania Avenue.
Obama told Trump that it was good to see him. They exchanged pleasantries, and Melania Trump brought a gift for Michelle Obama.
Melania Trump initially reached to shake Michelle Obama’s hand, but the first lady instead gave her a hug.
The families will have coffee and tea at a reception that’s closed to the media.
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama are asking the public to help them develop projects for his new presidential center on Chicago’s South Side.
The Obamas are starting up a foundation website — Obama.org — in the hours before Donald Trump is inaugurated the 45th president.
Obama says the foundation’s projects will be developed “all over the city, the country and the world.” He asks Americans to “tell us what you want this project to be and tell us what’s on your mind.”
The foundation is developing Obama’s presidential library and center in Chicago.
Donald Trump is heading to the White House to meet with President Barack Obama.
Trump has left St. John’s Church across from the White House. He paused to shake hands with a clergy member at the door and then walked to his waiting vehicle.
There were cheers from supporters as Trump left the church.
He was followed by family members and Vice President-elect Mike Pence. Pence said he was “very humbled” when he was asked about his message for the day.
President Barack Obama is taking a final stroll from the Oval Office through the Rose Garden as a sitting president. He’s soon to welcome his successor, Donald Trump, to the White House.
Obama was seen leaving papers on his desk in the Oval Office. He’s told reporters he’s feeling nostalgic on his final day as president.
He says his final message to the American people is “thank you.”
President Barack Obama is bidding farewell on Twitter.
Here’s what it says on the official presidential account: “It’s been the honor of my life to serve you.”
The president has been striking an optimistic tone in the final days of his administration.
He tells followers that he’s “still asking you to believe - not in my ability to bring about change, but in yours.”
The president is also asking people to share their thoughts about the focus of his new foundation’s work.
He says: “I won’t stop; I’ll be right there with you as a citizen, inspired by your voices of truth and justice, good humor, and love.”
Donald Trump will soon have a new home — the White House.
But what about another property just down Pennsylvania Avenue: the hotel he leases from the federal government at the Old Post Office building.
The contract with the General Services Administration bars elected officials from benefiting from it. Yet Trump hasn’t said he’s divested from the hotel — and he hasn’t tried to alter the contract.
House Democrats say GSA officials told them that Trump would violate the contract the moment he takes office. The GSA has said publicly it won’t weigh in on the matter until after Trump’s in office.
Protesters are trying to block access to security checkpoints across Washington to prevent spectators from making to Donald Trump’s inauguration festivities.
But so far, they’re not having too much success.
At one checkpoint a line of protesters are chanting “this checkpoint is closed” but a video of the scene posted online shows people going around them.
Police are directing people to walk around the lines of protesters.
The Washington Post is quoting a Washington police officer by name and saying one checkpoint was shut down at 8:30 a.m. due to protesters.
Moscow is hoping for better ties with the United States, and Russian officials and lawmakers are welcoming Donald Trump’s inauguration as the start of a potential new chapter.
In Moscow and other Russian cities, people have gathered at parties to celebrate Trump’s impending ascension to power.
Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev (dih-MEE’-tree med-VYEH’-dyev) says that while Trump’s policy toward Russia is unclear yet, “we are hoping that reason will prevail.”
Medvedev says on Facebook: “We are ready to do our share of the work in order to improve the relationship.”
About 100 protesters are attempting to block a gate near the inaugural parade route in Washington.
They’re calling for a response to climate change and they’re holding signs that say “Resist Trump, climate justice now.”
There are also chants of “This is what democracy looks like!”
Police are keeping a lane open for ticket holders to get through.
House Democrats will wear special buttons at Donald Trump’s inauguration as a silent protest of Republican efforts to repeal President Barack Obama’s health care law.
The blue buttons say #protectourcare. That’s a Twitter hashtag that some advocacy groups have been using to rally support for the law.
House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi has asked Democrats to show solidarity at the swearing-in and wear the buttons.
More than 50 House Democrats plan to boycott the ceremony. Some are citing Trump’s criticism of John Lewis, the Georgia congressman and civil rights leader who’s questioned Trump’s legitimacy to be the next president.
Donald Trump says his inauguration will have “an unbelievable, perhaps record-setting turnout.” Organizers of a protest the next day say their event will be the biggest demonstration in history to welcome a new president.
But how many people will show up at those gatherings? That’s a question that may never be answered satisfactorily.
There won’t be an official tally at Friday’s inaugural festivities or the Women’s March on Washington on Saturday.
For decades, the National Park Service provided official crowd estimates for gatherings on the National Mall.
But the agency stopped providing counts after organizers at 1995’s Million Man March threatened a lawsuit. They complained that the National Park Service undercounted attendance at the march.
It was still dark when Jeff McNeely and Rob Wyatt woke up and caught an early train to Washington for Donald Trump’s inauguration.
The political activists from North Carolina say they supported Trump from early on and wanted to witness the historic day in person.
McNeely calls Trump’s victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton “the greatest political upset of all time.”
Wyatt wants Americans to give Trump “the opportunity to learn.” Wyatt says Trump’s “going to make mistakes,” but he also says, “so has every president we’ve had.”
Actor Matthew McConaughey says the American people need to “embrace” the fact that Donald Trump won the election and make the best of the next four years.
The movie star says Americans need to “shake hands with the fact that this is happening and it’s going down.”
McConaughey is in London promoting two new movies and says he’s planning to watch the swearing-in live.
He’s predicting that “it’s going to be a dynamic four years.”
President-elect Donald Trump has emerged from Blair House to start the Inauguration Day festivities.
Trump and his wife, Melania, stepped out of the government guest house next to the White House just after 8:30 a.m. and took a motorcade for the short drive to St. John’s Episcopal Church. A light rain is falling.
After the service, they’ll head to the White House to be greeted by President Barack Obama.
Members of President-elect Donald Trump’s team are starting to arrive as Inauguration Day festivities get underway.
Incoming White House chief of staff Reince Priebus arrived shortly after 8 a.m. at Blair House — the government guest house across from the White House. It’s where Trump stayed on his final night before becoming president.
Also seen arriving are senior adviser and former campaign manager Kellyanne Conway and communications aide Hope Hicks.
Trump’s motorcade is waiting for him outside Blair House. He’ll soon go to a nearby church, St. John’s Episcopal Church, for a prayer service.
Why should Inauguration Day be any different for Donald Trump?
He’s up and tweeting early again.
Here’s what he says: “It all begins today! I will see you at 11:00 A.M. for the swearing-in. THE MOVEMENT CONTINUES - THE WORK BEGINS!”
Trump and his wife, Melania, are set to begin their day at St. John’s Episcopal Church, across from the White House.
Later in the morning, they’ll meet with President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama at the White House. Then comes the trip to the Capitol for the swearing-in ceremony.
Protesters who said they’d try to keep guests with tickets from watching Donald Trump take the oath of office aren’t having much luck so far.
Dozens of protesters are lined up at the entrance to a seating area on the West Front of the Capitol, and they’re holding signs that say “Free Palestine” and “Let Freedom ring.”
Some protesters are wearing orange jumpsuits with black hoods over their faces — showing their disapproval of the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo Bay.
But police are out in force, and they’re allowing ticketholders to make their way through the gate. On the other side of the Capitol, things are quiet and orderly at a second gate.
Kevin Puchalski is a 24-year-old construction worker who drove to Washington from Philadelphia with two friends to see Donald Trump’s inauguration.
He says: “I’m here for history. This is the first president that I voted for that won.”
Trump’s victory in Pennsylvania was critical to defeating Democrat Hillary Clinton. The state had voted for the Democratic nominee in the previous six presidential elections.
Puchalski says his main hope for Trump is that he fulfills his promise to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexican border.
Nigel Farage — the leader behind the effort to pull Britain from the European Union — has toasted Donald Trump at a reception on the top floor of a hotel overlooking the White House.
Farage notes that in 2016, British voters chose to leave the EU and that American voters picked Trump. He calls it a year that will be remembered as a pivot point in history.
Farage jokes that Trump is “the only person I’ve ever met in my life who makes me feel like an introvert.”
Before dawn on Inauguration Day, only a few lights are on at the White House residence, where President Barack Obama and his family have lived for the past eight years.
Klieg lights brightened the viewing stand from which Donald Trump will view the parade route later in the day.
Trump and his family were spending the night at Blair House, just across from the White House.
Lafayette Square outside the White House was fenced off with large metal barriers and security lines moved briskly to let outgoing White House staff and members of the media into the White House complex early in the morning.
Americans eager to see the Donald Trump take the oath of office as the nation’s next president are starting to make their way through downtown Washington and onto the National Mall.
Dump trucks, police cars and National Guard soldiers and city police are on street corners and are blocking vehicle access for blocks around the Mall.
But there’s plenty of room on the sidewalks for those clutching engraved tickets for a seat to Trump’s inauguration, as well as those without who plan to watch from spots between the Capitol and the Washington monument.