By H. Darr Beiser, USA TODAY
WASHINGTON (AP) -- You can expect a smaller, more muted presidential inauguration in January.
Four years ago, Barack Obama's swearing-in drew a record crowd to the National Mall, with 1.8 million people eager to witness history: the country's first black president taking the oath of office.
These days, the capital is pre-occupied with a looming economic crisis, exit from war and a reshuffling in Congress. Ticket demand is predictably lower. Hotels are far from booked. And from Capitol Hill to the White House, the upcoming festivities are hardly prominent on anyone's radar.
A somewhat scaled-down second inaugural is pretty normal for any president. But this year, it's almost as if Obama's swearing-in on the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday is just a been-there-done-that afterthought around town.