Politico kind of buries the lede here:
The inaugural team made a show of announcing that the festivities to mark Obama’s second Inauguration would be greatly curtailed this year as a nod to tough economic times. Rather than the 10 official balls that the president and first lady zipped around to in 2009, this year there would be only two: the Commander-in-Chief’s Ball, for 4,000 servicemen and -women and families of deployed soldiers, and then another for everyone else.
Left unsaid, however, was that the two balls together would host tens of thousands of people and feature a stout array of high-profile entertainers performing over two floors of the vast convention center. Among them: Stevie Wonder, Usher, Katy Perry, Marc Anthony, John Legend, Smokey Robinson and Alicia Keyes. “So it’s not a 10 [balls] down to two type situation,” concedes [Steve] Kerrigan.
In 2009 Barack Obama and his wife attended all ten 'official' Inaugural Balls - including the Neighborhood Ball, a $25 a head community ball explicitly designed to let the public in - and they clearly HATED the entire experience, which is apparently why they're now stuffing everybody who cares into a two-story corporate party. And if you're wondering how the First Couple expects to meet and greet 40,000 people in several hours' time, the answer is easy: they're not, silly. They're just going to meet and greet whoever makes it through the triple-distilled security screening process.
Ah, those populist Democrats. Then again, nobody sensible really believed that the Obamas actually LIKE to mingle with people outside of a rather rigidly-defined socioeconomic stratum...
(H/T: Hot Air Headlines)
Moe Lane (crosspost)