DC Anticipates 1.5M for Historic Inauguration

More than 1.5 million expected for historic event
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 8, 2008 6:35 AM CST
With the White House in the background, workers continue to build the Presidential inauguration reviewing stand in Washington, Friday, Nov. 7, 2008.    (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
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(Newser) – Hotel rooms will be as scarce as McCain-Palin T-shirts in Washington on Inauguration Day, the Wall Street Journal reports, as a record-breaking tide of Obama supporters—especially black Americans—makes a pilgrimage to witness the historic moment. More than 1.5 million people are expected to flood the city for the Jan. 20 event. Hotel rooms, even at rates above $1,000 a night, are booking three times faster than for the last inauguration.

Many residents are offering rooms to out-of-towners for the occasion, and many prospective visitors plan to make the trek with our without advance accommodations. "We want to be among that sea of people just basking in the flow of change," said one woman shelling out $700 a night for a room. "I said to my husband, 'What price is history?' And he said, 'Book the darn room.'" (Read more President Obama stories.)