A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

The ‘Class Act’ E-mail

Q: Was Bush’s exit from office a “Class Act” compared with Clinton’s?
A: A widely forwarded e-mail contains some false and exaggerated claims, along with some truths. It also contains made-up headlines about Obama.

Comparing Inauguration Costs

Q: Did Barack Obama’s inauguration really cost 4 times as much as George Bush’s 2005 inauguration?
A: Claims of a huge disparity are untrue. Actually, an apples-to-apples comparison shows that the two inaugurations likely cost about the same.

Blair House

Q: Why did the Obamas stay at a hotel instead of Blair House?
A: The family wanted the daughters to start school in early January, much earlier in the month than recent presidents have taken up residence there. The Bush administration said the guest house was unavailable, and a former Australian prime minister stayed there Jan. 12.

Cost of Obama’s Transition

Q: How is President-elect Obama paying for his transition?
A: Obama’s transition is being financed with $5.3 million in public funds provided by Congress, supplemented by another $6.7 million that his team hopes to raise from individuals in donations not exceeding $5,000 each.

Tickets to History

Q: How can one get inauguration tickets?
A: Tickets to watch the swearing-in can be requested through the Washington, D.C., offices of an individual’s representative or senators. But you’ll need some luck to score one.