WASHINGTON-- When President Barack Obama took the oath for his second term in office today, it was in the backdrop of a dim reality.
Millions of Americans are still out of work. Gridlock in Washington almost had the nation go off a so-called 'fiscal cliff" as the nation's debt soars.
The housing market is inching ever so slowly out of a slump but Americans are still struggling to keep their homes from going into foreclosure.
U.S. Rep Tammy Duckworth, who was in Washington for Obama's first inauguration in 2009 as well as this weekend, said one could feel the difference.
"I think that there was a euphoria then, and I think now there is more of a level of determination, like we gotta get some work done," she said. "I really think there's a sense of determined action. There's a sense of things to be done and this is our shot to do and we gotta do it in the next four years."
U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin readily acknowledged the change of tenor from 2009 to this weekend. "Of course it's different," Durbin said.
But that didn't take away from Obama's reelection, he said.
"It's a special moment in history," said Durbin. "My great friend and former colleague has run an extraordinary campaign. I think the message in his campaign is what we need to America and hope that's what his inaugural address will do... But it is still one of the few events in history that you can really witness and be part of, it makes such a dramatic difference, not only for the United States but for the world."
Obama inaugural a "special moment in history" but much work to be done.
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