Washington expressed its anticipation as Barack Obama took the presidential oath, with one hand on an 1861 bible used by his hero Abraham Lincoln.
But for a president praised for his oratory skills, there was a stumble as he took his first step towards destiny. Obama was not totally to blame, though: the Chief Justice who took the oath fluffed the phrase that the new president had to repeat.Then the polish shone again, the poise took over, and the office was assumed. In an acceptance speech which was more about tone and style than detailed policy, Obama called on Americans to rally for the sake of the country: “The challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time but know this America: they will be met…..Starting today we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.” Polls show widespread public support in the US for Obama and optimism about the coming four years of his presidency. Never has so much been expected of one man by so many in world politics.