WASHINGTON, D.C.—Linda Broadford traveled to Washington D.C. for President Barack Obama’s 2009 inauguration in a van with nine people. She had a ticket to access National Mall, but after five hours waiting outside the entry point, she never made it through onto the lawn.
This year, she promised it would be different. The coordinator of the Democratic campaign office in Weymouth flew Washington with her friend Judy Kendall, the office manager. The two stayed at the Omni Shoreham Hotel with the national committee people from Massachusetts.
“I’m thrilled because there’s less people,” said Broadford, whose day job is at Reebok. After the 1.8 million people in the crowd flooded Washington for the 2009 inauguration, the approximately 800,000 in attendance this year seemed small, but equally jovial.
“Last time we were surrounded by people and it was like one big party. Everyone talked to each other, smiled at each other,” Broadford said.
This year was the second time Broadford traveled to D.C. for the inauguration; it was the first time for Kendall, a retired elementary school teacher from Weymouth. Kendall said she was excited for Obama’s second term.
“I love that he’s already taken a stand on gun control,” she said.
Broadford said she felt it would be easier for Obama to focus on his agenda in the second term without the concern of running for reelection. She said she expected a high-energy atmosphere at this year’s inauguration and felt confident she would make it onto the Mall to celebrate another four years of Obama’s presidency.
“We had so many years of George Bush and it really brought us down. Now’s our time.”
Broadford spends much of her time engaged in politics. She and Kendall worked on Elizabeth Warren’s Senate campaign, and celebrated her victory alongside Obama’s. Broadford said she planned to enjoy the celebrating during inauguration weekend, but said there was still work to do when she returned to Weymouth. Massachusetts will soon see a special election to fill Senator John Kerry’s vacated seat.
Broadford and Kendall said they would support the Democratic candidate to counter another campaign from Scott Brown.
“We can’t have one election cancel the other out,” Broadford said. “We want to make it a better world and show that politics is not a bad word.”
The two political junkies took in the atmosphere of the nation’s political capital before Monday’s ceremony.
“Everybody smiles at everybody, and we’re all really happy,” said Broadford. “It’s time to celebrate hard work, and get a few souvenirs.”
This article is being published under an arrangement between the Boston Globe and the Boston University News Service.