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“A Long Train Ride”

ColumnJanuary 21, 2009

It started with a train ride. Barack Obama rode to Washington, D.C., for his presidential inauguration on a whistle-stop tour. “To the children who hear the whistle of the train and dream of a better life—that’s who we’re fighting for,” Obama said along the tour, which was compared to the train ride taken by Abraham Lincoln from Springfield, Ill., to Washington, D.C., in February 1861, en route to his first inauguration. The comparisons between Obama and Lincoln abound, describing the arc between the abolition of slavery in the United States and the election of the first African-American president.

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