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Women's March Protest Set To Dwarf Inauguration Crowd

Based on the number of charter bus permits issued before President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration and the subsequent Women's March on Washington, estimates project that the incoming president's swearing-in ceremony will draw a notably smaller crowd than the march that is in large part a protest against him.

The Council's Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety's chairman Charles Allen found that 393 charter bus permits have been requested for Trump's inauguration as of Jan. 14, while the Women's March on Washington has already reached its maximum threshold of requests with 1,200 permits issued, Buzzfeed News reports.

Trump's inauguration will occur on Jan. 20, with the Women's March following on Jan. 21.

On the Women's March of Washington's official Facebook page, organizers state that their event is in response to the campaign rhetoric of their presidential election, which they assert had "insulted, demonized, and threatened many of us … This march is the first step towards unifying our communities, grounded in new relationships, to create change from the grassroots level up."

Allen pledged that the city of Washington D.C. will accommodate and ensure the safety of both events.

"While the demand for bus parking seems significantly less than for previous inaugurations, the District is well prepared and will be ready for all visitors and guests making their way here," Allen said.

The chairman added that Washington D.C. "is no stranger to major events and we are ready to provide a safe experience for everyone and to protect their First Amendment rights in the process -- including the large crowds expected for the Women's March on Washington."

Trump has set a high bar for his inauguration. On Jan. 9, the president-elect suggested that the turnout for his swearing-in ceremony could set records.

"We are going to have an unbelievable, perhaps record-setting turnout for the inauguration, and there will be plenty of movie and entertainment stars," Trump told The New York Times.

Given projections of turnout for the 2017 inauguration, that may prove to be a tall order. Currently, inauguration planners estimate that Trump's swearing-in ceremony could turn out up to 800,000 people, which is half the 1.8 million that President Barack Obama drew in his 2009 inauguration.

"It's not even close to a record," Jim Bendat, a historian of presidential inaugurations, told McClatchy DC.

Obama's swearing-in ceremony in 2009 is estimated to have had the largest turnout in inauguration history. The previous record-holder was the inauguration of President Lyndon Johnson in 1965, which drew a crowd of 1.2 million.

Sources: Buzzfeed News, McClatchy DC, The New York Times, Women's March on Washington/Facebook / Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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