We now live in Obama Nation. It started off as the class act I expected. First, the Obama drones booed President Bush. Then came the benediction, which all but called Republicans instruments of Satan and made clear that Obama hasn't just been elected, he is the chosen of God. But the best part would be Obama smiling and nodding agreeably as the pastor giving the benediction made the following comment:
Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get in back, when brown can stick around... when the red man can get ahead, man; and when white will embrace what is right.Yeah, those god damned white people, they NEVER do what is right. I guess Obama has never met a non-typical white person. It's certain that none of Obama's ministers have ever met a white person they liked.
MORE: It turns out that the Obama 'bots continued to display their graciousness as Bush left DC.
The Bushes Depart | 12:56 p.m. The helicopter steps are folded up. The blade begins to rotate. The Obamas and Bidens are standing still, holding each other’s hands, as they watch the helicopter rev up. We now have lift-off; the Bushes have left the Capitol at 12:55 — almost half an hour ahead of time. The Obamas wave.And earlier....
The helicopter is swinging out over the Mall first instead of heading directly to Andrews. Surely the Bushes can’t hear the crowd below, but the chant is one that sports fans jeer to the opposing team: “Na Na Na Na/Na Na Na Na/Hey Hey Hey/Good-bye.”
Noting the Departure | 2:15 p.m. Corey Kilgannon, another colleague, talked to some people near the Capitol earlier today as former President Bush headed for the helicopter:Directly after the swearing-in, a crowd began to gather behind the Capitol building to watch George W. Bush airlift out of Washington.
“We’re here to see Bush leave – we’re going to give him the Jersey wave,” said James Moore, who was there with his wife, Sandra. “If you’re from New York, it’s the same as the Bronx cheer.”
“Don’t let the door hit you on the way out,” Ms. Moore said, gazing down to the Capitol. There were dozens of people holding up cameras and waiting for the moment that they considered the end of the Bush era.
“We want to see closure,” said Deborah Tompkins, who lives in the adjacent Capitol Hill neighborhood and jogged over to the location from home holding a sign that read, “Heck Of A Job, Bushie.”
Not everyone was celebrating Mr. Bush’s departure. Jan Olowski, 23, of Chicago, said he was a Bush supporter but that he realized it was his time to go.
“I supported him and I think he is a great man and a courageous leader, but after eight years – he can’t be president for life,” Mr. Olowski said.
“Thank God,” interjected a man near him, Jim Cobb, 56, who was in Washington with his son Chirstopher, 17, from New Orleans. The Cobbs said their house was flooded during Hurricane Katrina and it took 18 months to repair it, and they still resent Mr. Bush for what they call his inadequate response to the crisis.
“For us, it’s personal,” Mr. Cobb said. “It’s time for a change.”
At this point, the crowd spotted George and Laura Bush standing with Barack and Michelle Obama on the rear Capitol steps. Sharida Newton, 23, from Pine Hill, N.J., said, “I wish I could have helped him pack.”