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Obama issues inaugural call for unity, equality

Published on Jan 22, 2013 5:51 AM
US President Barack Obama waves to the corwd after taking the oath of office during the 57th Presidential Inauguration ceremonial swearing-in at the US Capitol on January 21, 2013 in Washington, DC. -- PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON (AFP) - President Barack Obama inaugurated his second term on Monday with an ardent call for unity, but warned his foes their "absolutism" must not thwart action on climate, immigration and gun control.

Mr Obama was publicly sworn in for another four White House years before a flag-waving crowd of hundreds of thousands, then delivered an inaugural address in which poetic power veiled clear signs of a liberal governing agenda.

"We do not believe that in this country freedom is reserved for the lucky, or happiness for the few," Mr Obama said, from the Stars and Stripes-draped West Front of the United States (US) Capitol building, the epicentre of America's political divides.

The 44th president repeatedly used the We The People preamble to the US Constitution to suggest how to reconcile America's founding truths and the current discord and dysfunction of its embittered political system.

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