What They Said

Barack Obama The 44th President Of The United States Of America

Obama's Inauguration

January 21, 2009

"You just had the sense of the enormity of the historical milestone that we've reached as a nation to see President Obama and the first lady of the United States walk down Pennsylvania Avenue. I was seated right at the northwest corner of Pennsylvania Avenue and 15th as they turned the corner and started walking toward the White House as the sun set behind it. That's an image I'll always have in my head and always have in my heart."

Gov. Martin O'Malley, Democrat

"I've been real emotional all morning thinking about my grandmother and the heroes whose shoulders we stand on. They'd be so proud."

Lyshundria Houston, 34, Memphis, Tenn.

"It is now time to leave whining, divisiveness, fear and politics as usual behind as we reach out for a future in which America will again take its rightful and undisputed place as the world leader in every aspect of life."

Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, Baltimore Democrat

"At one time, where he talked about American leadership in the world and our ideals and standing up against some of the things that have happened over the last eight years, I looked over and saw President Bush applauding."

Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin, Maryland Democrat

"Somebody asked me afterward if I could remember anything like this happening in my lifetime. I'm not sure anything like this had ever happened in the life of this country."

Rep. John Sarbanes, Baltimore County Democrat

"We are so grateful to live in this land, a land of unequaled possibility, where the son of an African immigrant can rise to the highest level of our leadership. We know today that Dr. King and a great cloud of witnesses are shouting in heaven."

The Rev. Rick Warren, senior pastor, Saddleback Church, Lake Forest, Calif.

"Say it plain: That many have died for this day."

Elizabeth Alexander, poet

"When he took his oath, I just felt a shiver. And it wasn't because of the chilly air."

Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski, Maryland Democrat

"I just thought about my ancestors and so many ancestors who paved the way for this moment to come."

Mayor Sheila Dixon, Democrat

"People who feel they never had a place at the table now have a major place at the table, and it's exciting. I mean, only in America."

State Senate Republican Whip Nancy Jacobs of Harford County

"We'll wait and see. We'll give him every honor that is due him as president of the United States. But that does not mean agreeing with him in everything he wants to do."

Jim Pelura, chairman, Maryland Republican Party

"The [1963 March on Washington] was not this big. ... For the civil rights veterans, it's a joy of achievement. ... For President Obama, it's a joy of accomplishment."

The Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr., president, Rainbow/PUSH

"We got blocked off; there was too much traffic and no guidance. I've been walking for an hour and a half. All I want to do is see my president sworn in."

Alice Williams, 51, Kansas City, Mo.

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