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Mad Scramble for Thousands of Discarded Obama Invites

People are picking through dumpsters near the Longworth and Cannon House Office Buildings on Capitol Hill to collect some of the thousands of invitations to Obama's inauguration that were discarded this afternoon, a source tells Inauguration Watch.

The invitations were sent out to Obama volunteers and campaign donors by the Presidential Inaugural Committee. The 8-inch by 10-inch manila-colored piece of paper, with the committee seal in gold on top, did not actually get anyone into any special events this week, but rather were an official welcome to get involved in the free events, such last Sunday's welcome concert on the mall.

Tens of thousands of them were dumped into two dumpsters, reports our source, and passers-by, as well as police officers in the area, have been carting them off as souvenirs. "I got a whole box full," our source said.

By David A Nakamura  |  January 23, 2009; 3:07 PM ET  | Category:  Souvenirs
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""I got a whole box full," our source said."

What would you do with a full box of these?

Posted by: ArlingtonVA3 | January 23, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Well there go the official inaugural souvenirs that those of us who were stuck in the tunnel or not admitted to our gates were supposed to get, according to the JCCIC. What next.

Posted by: Lizard4280 | January 24, 2009 12:31 PM | Report abuse


Well there go the official inaugural souvenirs that those of us who were stuck in the tunnel or not admitted to our gates were supposed to get, according to the JCCIC. What next.

Posted by: Lizard4280 | January 24, 2009 12:31 PM [/quote]

ROFLOL - Ok this is the first time since Tuesday that I could laugh. Yup, so they were going to provide those of us left out with the extra that they were throwing out. Wow... what a gift. Send me a DVD from the concert, swearing in and parade. I don't need any more scraps of paper.

Posted by: detaileddiva | January 24, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

After teaching school for 36 yrs.including history/govt., another retired history teacher and I were very disappointed after receiving our blue tickets and not being able to get in to see or hear any of the festivities.It was the trip of a lifetime that went bad, almost like a bad movie or a bad dream.We arrived on site around 8am and got in line for the blue area. We noticed early, that the orange line was moving very smoothly and orderly and our "line" if you can call it that was about 2-3 people deep and then all of a sudden the people from the end of the line came to the front and it became a line of about 5-6 people deep. We only saw ONE police officer the entire 3 hrs. + that we stood there. We met 2 students from the U. of Michagan who were super. If you are reading this account, our hats are off to you. These guys did go on down to the first gate and came back and told us then it did not look like ANYBODY would get in. There was NO DIRECTION, NO INFO, NO HELP, mabye one sign. It was a miracle that non one was stampeeded, hurt, hit or something. As a former educator, we call it LACK OF PLANNING.Somebody called a tv station and when they arrived he told them that we were not going anywhere. We had a walker and a cane. The lady behind us had a wheelchair. We noticed that there were NO PROVISIONS for special needs and that is APPALING.We had people who said they were from the silver section and needed to cross over our lines. That was not good and it became obnoxious and not safe. As far as an apology and a copy of the invitations, photos etc. of the pres. and vp, we already received that in our packets. I would expect a VIP invitation for the 2012 ceremonies, a comp ticket for Aretha Franklin when she comes to Dallas next yr and a copy of YO Yo Ma's new CD about the Silk Road. Again, the trip of the lifetime, squandered, trashed and exploited by the lack of organization and lack of protection of the people during a such important event. As we say in Spanish, Que lastima-what a pity.
Thanks for listening. Connie from Dallas

Posted by: chelita21 | January 24, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

"Well there go the official inaugural souvenirs that those of us who were stuck in the tunnel or not admitted to our gates were supposed to get, according to the JCCIC. What next."

Those are something totally different - you should have gotten one of these invitations when you picked up your ticket. I got one from my rep when I got my (ultimately useless) blue ticket.

Posted by: acb1 | January 26, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Hey chelita21, you were LUCKY enough to even have had the chance to get a blue ticket. There were hundreds of thousands who wanted nothing more than to attend but were not buddy-buddy with the Congressman or are working 2-3 jobs to feed their kids and could not volunteer endless hours to help the campaign. You are lucky to have a life that allows you the chance to even get a ticket. Now that everything was not perfect for you, you're going to complain and demand that someone give you royal treatment? Your view was much better than the hundreds of thousands of homeless people on the streets. Your view was much better than the millions of people that were too busy trying to find work to even have the chance to watch on television. For being a retired teacher, you certainly are being selfish.

By the way, I had a blue ticket and got in line at 8:45 and was through security by 11:30. I had just about the best view one could get. It was still so far back all you could see was the stage and the people were smaller than ants. It's the fact that you were there, in DC, to be a part of the entire week, that matters. If that means nothing to you, then I feel very, very sorry!

Posted by: miiriver | January 27, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

miiriver: Could you be more insensitive?? I know lots of people who got tickets, some just average folks who contacted their member of Congress and were selected through lotteries and some who got tickets because they have been committed to the cause of seeing a good person lead this country for many years, if not their whole lives. To have that dream realized, be rewarded with a prized ticket, spend thousands of dollars to get here and get a hotel room (money most probably really couldn't afford), and then to be shut-out in this complete debacle of a situation... I cannot even begin to imagine how disappointed and sad I would be. Most of the hard-working campaign volunteers and staff that I have known make miserable wages, but they do it because they are devoted to a cause.

Are there worse situations in the world? Of course. Dying children in Africa, etc. But this situation was so avoidable and so sad on what should have been the event of a lifetime for good people who worked hard and deserved it.

You should be ashamed of yourself for your comments and try not to be such a bitter, mean-spirited person.

For the record, I have worked on many campaigns in my life, and currently work for a non-profit organization. I stood in the non-ticketed area of the Mall, but purchased tickets to the parade through Ticketmaster-- which did me no good as the Secret Service wouldn't let us through to our parade check-point. (But I have internet access, so I shouldn't complain right? Homeless people don't even have internet access!)

Posted by: JennX_ | January 27, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

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