Donald Trump has made some brash claims about his inauguration; stating on several occasions that it will be a massive affair. This line of rhetoric is unsurprising from a president-elect who became known for his catchphrases “yuge” and “bigly” on the campaign trail.
However, there are many who claim that Trump, a born businessman, is overselling his ceremony. In an interview with the New York Times he claimed that “all the dress shops are sold out in Washington. It’s hard to find a dress for this inauguration.” Rare News reached out to three different boutiques in D.C., and two confirmed that they do have dresses available for the inauguration, while a third, Neiman Marcus, declined to comment. Martha Slagle, the general manager of Neiman Marcus, told the Washington Post last week that the high-end store has “more than a thousand evening gowns to choose from.”
On popular auction sites like Ebay, tickets were selling for $299 on Union Square and just over $600 on the West Front of the Capitol. The prices are down significantly from even a month ago, when The Hill reported on West Front tickets being sold for $14,700. On Craigslist, the tickets are going for even less — two tickets on the mall are going for $450 and less.
The New York Daily News spoke with a number of scalpers who said that they are having a difficult time getting rid of the tickets that they bought, including one man who bought the tickets for $700 and has gone so far as to try to list them on a white supremacist website. Trump posted a video to his Facebook encouraging people to come to the event.
The lack of interest is a sharp contrast with only eight years ago, when tickets were sold for such absurd prices that Congress tried to pass a bill that would outlaw scalping inauguration tickets. According to the Washington Post, Senator Feinstein (D-CA) “pledged to require everyone receiving a ticket from her office to promise not to re-sell the passes.” Just before that, a Republican aide was caught selling tickets for $875 a piece on Craigslist. While Trump’s inauguration will certainly be well attended, and all of the three official inaugural balls are sold-out, it definitely won’t go down in history as the biggest.