NPR’s Michel Martin interviewed Congressional Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton on Friday about just how many people will be coming to D.C. for the inauguration, and how the city is bracing for the flood. The interview includes some useful numbers, and interesting thoughts from Norton about what Washington D.C. should do to ensure the event goes smoothly. Here’s a snippet of what may be to come:
Michel Martin: The largest crowd ever recorded on the mall was for Lyndon Johnson’s 1965 inauguration—-at that time, the park service estimated that 1.2 million people came. The park service estimates 1 million people will come for this. Do you think that’s right?
Eleanor Holmes Norton: The park service is probably right if you’re talking about the number of people the mall will hold. My concern is the number of people coming without tickets, whatever tickets mean to them, with no place to stand. And I am recommending to the campaign, to security officials—-and I’m on the homeland security committee—-that there be off-Mall sites, that there be sites in our convention centers, and major sports centers, that there be sites in churches. We see elderly people saying ‘oh I thought I’d never live to see this, so I’ve got to be there.’ Many of them have never been to Washington on January 20, when it’s cold.