It is official. At a little over noon EST on January 20, 2017, Donald J. Trump was sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. The unlikely campaign of the ultimate outsider candidate, the plain talking real estate billionaire and reality television star has now achieved the ultimate outcome. The “Donald” is now the new occupant of The White House. After he was sworn in by Chief Justice John Roberts, President Trump delivered a 16-minute inaugural speech against a backdrop of raindrops.
While critics of Trump who enters the White House with only a 44% approval rating will say that the speech was just a continuation of his campaign rhetoric, the presentation was authentic, simple and inspirational. And just like a favorite song, it ended with his signature sign off, “And yes, together, we will make America great again. Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America. Thank you. God bless America.” The only missing element was the Rolling Stones song, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” which became what some might call an ironic choice for a musical theme.
Trump’s inaugural speech hit all of his key themes including that the forgotten man and woman will be forgotten no more and that he as President he will put America first on the economic and national security fronts. Trump also delivered his cornerstone populist message which is that his victory belongs to the American people. “This is your day. This is your celebration. And this, the United States of America, is your country”, Trump said building on the “I am just the messenger” communications which have become a recent hallmark of his campaign rallies and post-election public addresses.
Trump is now officially a member of the very small club which includes only five other living members, former presidents Jimmy Carter, George Herbert Walker Bush, William Jefferson Clinton, George W. Bush and, of course, Barack Obama. All of the above were in attendance at the inauguration with the exception of George Herbert Walker Bush who was recently hospitalized along with his wife Barbara.
So now that #44 Barack Obama has handed the baton to #45, Donald Trump, the real work to rebuild America will begin. In his first official duties, President Trump signed the commissions confirming the appointment of retired general James Mattis as Secretary of Defense and retired general John Kelly as Secretary of Homeland Security. He also signed an executive order entitled “Minimizing the Economic Burden of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Pending Repeal”, or otherwise known as the first step towards repealing and replacing Obamacare.
Yes, the page in the history book has turned. The Trump administration has begun.