Daily Briefing: Inauguration Wrap

Pink Elephants Bush pledges "ultimate goal" is "ending tyranny in our world"; uses words "free," "freedom," or liberty 49 times, though no mention of "Afghanistan," "Sept. 11," "Iraq," or "terrorism." [WP, NYT, WSJ, LAT, USAT, WT, BG]


Bush outlines ambitious, idealist, big-picture philosophy: "America's vital interests and our deepest beliefs are now one." [WP, NYT, USAT, BG]

Cheney on Iran: "We don't want a war in the Middle East, if we can avoid it"; speculates Israel may initiate military action. [WP, NYT]

American flags set on fire; apples and bananas were taken from bystanders; crowd estimated at 265,000 for swearing-in, 150,000 for parade; 13,000 law enforcement; 65 arrests. [WP, WP, WP, WP, USAT]

Rehnquist seen as "proud man struggling." Bush says it was "incredibly moving." [WP, NYT, WSJ, USAT, WT]

Speech doesn't jive with foreign policy. Human Rights Watch director: "The decision to speak in terms of liberty instead of human rights was deliberate... [It's] difficult to say I'm for human rights when he's overseeing what we know is a conscious policy of coercive interrogation, including inhuman treatment and sometimes torture." [WP, LAT]

It's all Bush: "Even though this is his second inaugural, for 43 this is his show." [NYT]

Bushes quickly hit inaugural balls. [USAT]

Protesters stage "die-in." [USAT, NYT]

Congressional Republicans peeved about delay in Rice vote. [NYT]

Johanns, Spellings confirmed by Senate. [LAT, USAT, WT]

Kerry "seemed to embrace the role of loser with ironic amusement"; other just seeking a good view. [WP, NYT]

On the Hill, Bush is welcomed by brief bipartisanship. [WP]

Clinton lunches with Rove. [NYT]

Foreign press recognize religious tones of speech. [WP]

Shales: "The delivery lacked heart and soul." [WP]

Givhan: Laura's dress is "undeniable evidence her aesthetic sensibility has become more sophisticated, more refined and unabashedly rich." [WP]

Collection of stories from the big day. [WP]

Stanley: "[T]he network anchors were as submissive as the Republicans were dominant." [NYT]

Pataki throws elaborate party for Iowa delegation in bid to outshine Giuliani on road to '08. [NYT]

And the jockeying begins. Matthew Dowd: "If you go back and look, 2008 will be the first election in modern times when there is no heir apparent on either side. It's amazing. It's a happenstance of history." [NYT]

[REUTERS/Mike Segar]

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