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House meets to attend Obama's inauguration

House meets to attend Obama's inauguration
Spectators gather in the early morning light waiting for President Barack Obama to sworn-in for a second term as the president of the United States by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts during his public inauguration ceremony at the U.S. Capitol Monday. UPI/Pat Benic | License Photo

WASHINGTON, Jan. 21 (UPI) -- The U.S. House of Representatives met for a few minutes Monday to prepare to join in the festivities of President Barack Obama's second inauguration.

Only current House members can participate in the procession and sit on the platform during the swearing-in ceremony, said Rep. John Shimkus, R-Ill., the speaker pro tem on Monday.

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During the morning prayer, the House chaplain, the Rev. Patrick J. Conroy, asked that President Obama be "strengthened in his work and grow in understanding," and that he "respond to nation's deepest needs and lift us up to higher standards."

Conroy also prayed for Obama's health and protection and that the president be supported with "encouragement and prayer."

The Senate's calendar for Monday read: "11:30 a.m.: Convene for the joint session for the Inaugural Ceremonies."

Meanwhile, at the West Front of the U.S. Capital, chants of "Rise up" and "Ready to go" could be heard between musical selections as diplomatic representatives, lawmakers and other dignitaries were escorted to the site of the swearing-in ceremony.

The temperature, under cloudy skies, was 36 degrees F, wunderground.com said.

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