December 5th, 2008
05:00 PM ET

Good idea for D.C. bars to stay open all night during inauguration?



FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

President-elect Barack Obama's inauguration is going to be a huge celebration bringing millions of people to Washington D.C. to party.

In order to literally keep the party going all night long, the city council passed emergency legislation this week allowing bars, night clubs and restaurants to stay open around the clock from January 17th until January 21st.

People could disagree about whether this is a real good idea. Yesterday, the leader of the Washington D.C. police union told the Washington Post he's worried that police resources could be insufficient during Inauguration weekend because of extended hours for clubs, bars and restaurants.

He said the officers in the seven precincts that serve the district will be spread thin and the amount of manpower needed for these extended bar hours is unknown. What is known, or can be reasonably assumed, is that if between three and five million people descend on Washington for the inauguration and the bars are open around the clock there could be problems.

Here’s my question to you: Is it a good idea to keep the bars in Washington D.C. open 24 hours a day for four days during inauguration week?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

David from Janesville, Wisconsin writes:
It might keep the alcohol sector from needing a bail-out and 96 hours of binge drinking for large crowds always ends well.

Frank from Canada writes:
Speaking from experience, when I was a habitual drunk, I can tell you for certain that closing a bar will not stop anyone from getting drunk if they are so inclined. Once we are grown ups we all have the choice whether we are going to act grown up or not. People who think closing bars will keep people from drinking alcohol are likely the same ones who think teaching teens abstinence will stop them from having sex.

Ken writes:
Oh geez. Please let us party, it's been a LONG election!!

Lucy from Massachusetts writes:
Close the bars on time. Even in New Orleans, on Mardi Gras night when the clock strikes 12am the party is over, bars which usually stay open until 4am close, and everybody gets off of the streets.

Dan from Washington, DC writes:
I thank all the people who don't live in DC for their concern, but letting people go home at their own pace, rather than everyone at 2am, will ease congestion, limit drunken conflicts and help the crush on DC's arcane taxi infrastructure.

Jason from Canton, Pennsylvania writes:
With the last eight years and the current state of the country, I think it is a shame it isn't country wide.

Buster from Poughkeepsie, New York writes:
Road Trip! Damn Jack, my New Year's resolution was going to be to knock off the 96 hour drinking binges. Oh well, next year. Hey, if you or Wolf aren't too busy, I'll see you at the Capitol Lounge bar. I'm buying.

Filed under: Inauguration
soundoff (254 Responses)
  1. Karen - Nashville TN

    No, no, no. And that means NO.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:13 pm |
  2. Daniel Ambrose

    Why not? They might as well be apart of the rest businesses that are going to benefit financially from this historic event.

    Daniel Ambrose,
    Atlanta, GA

    December 5, 2008 at 1:13 pm |
  3. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    It's a good idea if you want to end the recession! Democrats will drink out of celebration and Republicans will drink away their sorrow.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:14 pm |
  4. Jenny Rome Ga

    Sure. Between the disenfranchised Republicans and the unemployeed the bars should be doing a booming business. Shirley Temples for everyone on me!!!

    December 5, 2008 at 1:21 pm |
  5. Jane (Minnesota)

    It's a bad idea, Jack. With that many extra people in town for the inauguration, to allow them 24/7 access to alcohol is a recipe for trouble for law enforcment - why give law enforcement one additional thing to do.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:22 pm |
  6. Richard - Knoxville TN

    Absolutely NOT - And for the same reasons the bars are not open 24/7 the rest of the year or other times -

    Barrak Obama - What kind of message is this sending to the rest of the country -

    I guess it is DC and its government to come out clear and strong with the Republican-Big Business-Wall Street mantra of "Anything goes, even 4 days of street drunkeness, just as long as we make a buck - So what if we have to remove all regulations – We've done it before to fill our pockets - ".

    December 5, 2008 at 1:23 pm |
  7. James Conn

    Jack, If the expected turnout is going to be as big as perdicted, its going to take that long to get served. Jim Logansport, In

    December 5, 2008 at 1:23 pm |
  8. Liberal in Los Angeles, CA

    Although it will be a great celebration, I don't think it's a good idea.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:26 pm |
  9. Karl from SF, CA

    Why not. After eight years of nothing to celebrate, we, collectively, need a good party. With two wars, torture, illegal wiretaps and everything else coming to an end, Washington has a lot to celebrate. It's the end of the monarchy.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:28 pm |
  10. Dennis from Albuquerque

    I guess it depends on the capacity of the drunk tank in DC and surrounding municipalities.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:28 pm |
  11. Eric from J.C. TN

    Well jack,
    It is a history making event along with a historical economical meltdown. I mean hey if it will get people's mind off of the disasterous economy then drink it up. I don't drink but have nothing against people that do as long as they are responsible.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:28 pm |
  12. Steve C

    Bad Idea! Why do people need alcohlol to celebrate?

    Laguna Niguel.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:29 pm |
  13. hugh ~ tracy, california

    As long as there's a designated driver or a taxi-ride back to the hotel why not? America deserves to celebrate Barak Obama's victory with cheers aplenty!
    "Beer is proof God loves us, and wants us to be happy."
    –Benjamin Franklin

    December 5, 2008 at 1:30 pm |
  14. David, Tampa, Fl

    I question the wisdom of that unless the police are going to be willing to bust all the trouble making revelers regardless of political party or ideology. Last of the good parties for a long time. Enjoy, all that go but be safe.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:32 pm |
  15. John in Arizona

    Jack, we're in a recession, if not a depression. Pumping beer for 1.5 million Washington revelers will pump millions of dollars into the economy. It's actually Obama's first economic stimulus.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:33 pm |
  16. Bob D, Morristown, NJ

    It's party time, and this inauguration represents so much hope to overcome our deep despair. "Happy Days are here again", and those who can't influence or afford to buy their way into the fancy balls deserve a chance to celebrate as well.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:33 pm |
  17. Greg in Cabot AR

    The Republicans will have to have some place to go to cry in their beer.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:36 pm |
  18. Geezer

    I think they are asking for trouble.
    Drinking too much affects peoples good judgement.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:36 pm |
  19. Doug - Dallas, TX


    December 5, 2008 at 1:38 pm |
  20. Billy G in Las Vegas

    sure as long as Plaxico Burress isn't coming to the celebration.

    "Party Like It 1933"

    December 5, 2008 at 1:43 pm |
  21. Marie

    Definitely. New Orleans only wishes it could as many people.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:45 pm |
  22. NANCY M.- Colorado

    What kind of message would that be setting for the rest of the country and the world?

    December 5, 2008 at 1:47 pm |
  23. Linda in Florida

    I think this is a bad idea. Law enforcement personnel are going to have their hands full as it is, without bars being open 24 hrs a day.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:47 pm |
  24. Annie, Atlanta

    I don't drink, but I know some enjoy getting in the festive mood by having a few, and it certainly will help the local bar owners. So sure, why not.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:47 pm |
  25. mitchell ,arkansaw

    yes,and they should be allowed to stay open 24/7 ,until the recession/depression is over. if we have to be forced to hear bad news everyday, we should be able to get drunk and ferget about it ,when we want to.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:48 pm |
  26. KarenB, Florida

    we've already seen plenty of bad judgment. excessive alcohol consumption on top of it can only make it worse.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:52 pm |
  27. Lady

    No. There will be too many people and too few law officers.

    This is a great time in history... no doubt. But there will still be people their taking advantage of the situation and the uphoric feel of the atmosphere. Excited people will have their guard down and not as vigilant about their surroundings.

    I believe the allowance of 'all night bars', will spawn more incidents of rape, robbery, and other disturbing acts of violence.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm |
  28. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    Huh!?The way business has been conducted of the last 8 years I thought they already were.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm |
  29. Molly B

    Molly – IA.

    Mercy no! I agree with Geezer. The typical persons judgement is
    somewhat poor at best but let them get even "half in the bag" and
    LOOK OUT! I've been there and done that and know how stupid
    it is. Stay sober and see how much money is saved. Besides,
    we'll need the money in the coming years. I'm feel quite confident
    that P.E. Obama will pull us out of the recession but it will take time.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm |
  30. Katiec Pekin, IL

    Shoot, why not Jack?
    It is such an historical, great event, a person that is lucky enough
    to be there should be able to celebrate it to the fullest.
    Hopefully for his 2012 inaugeration we will be able to celebrate
    our countries path to prosperity.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm |
  31. Hummer Girl - Florence, South Carolina

    Why not? The economy is suffering. Let whoever can make $$$ make it! This is the Democratic Way!! Free Enterprise!!

    December 5, 2008 at 1:55 pm |
  32. Cori from Colorado

    If that happens, can you imagine how many problems this would cause? When people don't set limits on their drinking, they make really stupid judgement calls, like drinking and driving, fighting, or even the possibility of nonsense riots. Although there are millions who are happy about Obama's victory, there a still a lot of people who are not, and will look to cause trouble. The country doesn't need innocent lives being jeapordized on a historic night like that, and I'm sure Obama would agree.

    December 5, 2008 at 1:57 pm |
  33. John


    There's only one thing worse than drunken sailors and that's drunken politicians.

    John in Normal, IL

    December 5, 2008 at 1:58 pm |
  34. Renee

    Wow I heard they'd close from 5am to opening time, but I hadn't heard 24 hrs... I think it's OK as long as the Metro trains/buses are also operational during that time. With so many people going to DC, I hope the Metro is seriously extending its hours!!

    December 5, 2008 at 1:59 pm |
  35. Lady

    I just wanted to add, Gary – Woodhaven, Michigan, was hilarious!

    December 5, 2008 at 2:00 pm |
  36. Rich McKinney, Texas

    Good for the Bars but not the police and fire department. Someone has to mind the store and if the store is full of drunks that becomes a disaster waiting to happen.
    Terrorists attacks and drunks don't mix. No one will be able to tell the good guys from the bad guys and with a town full of drunks to police the police will be much to busy to pay attention to the warning signs of terrorists.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:07 pm |
  37. Aaron from Denver

    Millions of people getting drunk and celebrating.... Sounds like the locals might want to barricade their doors and bolt down their cars.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:07 pm |
  38. wally Ruehmann las vegas nv

    our bars here are open 24-7 great idea ,i enjoy having steak and eggs with a bloody mary at 5:00 am . great way to welcome the sunrise. it teaches one self responsibility and moderation.. think about the people coming off the nite shift, they should be able to choose there free time and place to enjoy...

    December 5, 2008 at 2:08 pm |
  39. Pat,Lexington, Ky.

    As a recovering alcoholic, my thinking on this is no. Bars/restaurants are usually open 12-14 hrs. a day, right? That's plenty of time for anyone who wants to to get totally sauced. Besides, don't people want to remember the inauguration? and the historic sights in D.C.? If they drink enough, they won't remember any of it!!

    December 5, 2008 at 2:08 pm |
  40. Jim/NC

    This country has been drunk for years. Why not?

    December 5, 2008 at 2:08 pm |
  41. Conor in Chicago

    This is a good idea across the entire US.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:09 pm |
  42. Paul in Nevada

    Haven't law enforcement and the Secret Service got enough to worry about that week already without additional drunks being thrown into the mix?

    This Innauguration is not a spectacle of Beer, Bread and Circuses. It is a transition of power in our government and the beginning of an era of national repair.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:10 pm |
  43. Mike S.,New Orleans

    I'm from New Orleans. I didn't know bars ever closed.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:11 pm |
  44. Jim


    Well, it might benefit some Republicans who want to spend that 24 hours crying in their beer, but mostly it would just invite drunken chaos in the streets. Close 'em down.

    Reno, Nevada

    December 5, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  45. JD in NH

    Sure. It'll be a bonanza for the bar owners in bad, economic times. If they're smart they'll double or triple the cost of drinks for that 4 days.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  46. mac from traverse city Michigan

    As I understand it Jack the bars can remain open but alchohol won't be served after three-o clock in the morning. An estimated 3 million people are coming to town for the inaugeration and they will have to be fed somewhere. I see nothing wrong with these bar-owners keeping their food services open and making a good profit for a day or two.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:15 pm |
  47. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Absolutely not, bars should be closed just like they are on election day. I don't want the wrong message sent to our children that could ruin such a historic event.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:16 pm |
  48. Larry in Houston

    Sure, why not ? It will help the economy...


    December 5, 2008 at 2:18 pm |
  49. Charlie in Belen, New Mexico

    Fine with me, I'm 2,000 miles away. Besides, the way that the economy is going, those four days may be the last time that many of those bars and restaurants will be in business.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:18 pm |
  50. Atlanta Charlie

    Sure why not – It might help boost the economy!

    December 5, 2008 at 2:19 pm |
  51. B. D. in Saugerties, NY

    One million drunk people in Washington DC. What could possibly go wrong?

    December 5, 2008 at 2:21 pm |
  52. Lee in TN

    Definitely not a good idea. There will be enough work for the law with the big hoopla.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:22 pm |
  53. Terry from North Carolina

    Are you kidding ? This is a ceremony where the president elect is sworn in, this should be quick and painless, also alcohol free. Its not time for a party lets get down to business and get people back to work.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:23 pm |
  54. carol in Oregon

    What are the odds to get home safe. I might want to put a bet on the bars to win.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:26 pm |
  55. Gina in Racine, Wi


    This is going to be some Celebration....this is such a Historic event for us.

    And after all....the Republican's need the bars to stay open all night so they have a place to cry into their beers, about how badly they lost November 4th.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:26 pm |
  56. Christine, Edmeston NY

    Good for business, I suppose, but it sounds more like a green light to potential trouble than anything else. I think I'd be most interested in hearing how the already over-stretched DC law-enforcement personnel would answer this question.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:26 pm |
  57. Tom in Desoto, TX

    If we can make sure the politicians are in the bars, that would be great. At least we'd know they aren't setting up the next catastrophe.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:27 pm |
  58. Tina (Texas)

    Why not? The economy sucks so why not rake in some extra money. You drink, get stupid, go to jail, collect 200.00 go home.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:27 pm |
  59. Tony in Michigan

    What could possibly go wrong with that, Jack?

    December 5, 2008 at 2:28 pm |
  60. Frank, Connellsville, PA

    There are two reasons to keep the bars open. First, all the Deomcrats will be drinking to forget the last eight years. Second, all teh Republicans will be drinking to forget the last....oh, guess there is only one reason after all!

    December 5, 2008 at 2:29 pm |
  61. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    The crime rate in DC is the highest in the nation without adding fuel to the fire. No it's not a good idea. Maybe they should add an additional 10% tax on the sale of booze so they could loan the auto industry $34 billion.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:30 pm |
  62. Joanne Buck

    Who cares ! People will drink irregardless if bars open or not.
    Joanne B

    December 5, 2008 at 2:31 pm |
  63. Roger from Espanola, New Mexico

    Sure! Why not! But let's keep the coffee shops and diners open too! If we're going to party, let's enjoy it. After the long campaign and with all thats going on plus the historic inauguration, folks deserve a good party. This doesn't mean that everyone has to act like idiots. The occasion is not to be compared to English or American football hooligans. Let's not knock it down prematrurely!

    December 5, 2008 at 2:32 pm |
  64. Stacy from Fairfax, VA

    I personlly don't understand why someone would want to hang out at a bar all hours of the day, but it's about simple demand. You have those who are drinking to celebrate the new presidency and/or those who are drinking to mourn the demise of our economy. There is plenty of demand to justify the increased bar hours.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:35 pm |
  65. Paulette,Dallas,PA

    People are going to get alcohol one way or another,so why not have the DC bars join in the profit making.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:36 pm |
  66. Ed

    Absolutely not..by the fourth day the floors would be to sticky, people would get stuck.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:38 pm |
  67. Jeffrey Cohen from LA, California

    Its definitely a good idea. The atmosphere is going to be one of great excitement and enthusiasm and so why not have the bars open all night so people can continue to converse and experience good times they will remember for the rest of their lives! Plus its my birthday!

    December 5, 2008 at 2:39 pm |
  68. BodyByKen

    I think the bars should stay open all night for the inauguration! It would be good for revenue for all businesses that night.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:39 pm |
  69. David Pickett Janesville WI

    Bars open all night are never a good idea, but maybe with a big crowd and lots of controversial stimuli it will work out for the best.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:41 pm |
  70. Anthony Smith

    Working in the restaurant business for almost 20 years, it is a HUGE mistake! You can't mix politics, alcohol, and proctologists in the same room.

    Wildwood Crest, NJ

    December 5, 2008 at 2:41 pm |
  71. Deb I , Nauvoo, IL

    Can you imagine how much a bar in DC is going to be charging for "inaugural" liquor? I don't think it is going to be easy or inexpensive to spend four days drinking. I have to admit, I don't quite understand the logic of this–are hotels that full that people are going to need a place to get inside? People, have a little dignity and respect–don't ruin this occasion for those of us watching from the boondocks.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  72. Deb (Bow, NH)

    You mean they're not already? Then what's Congress's excuse?

    December 5, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  73. vern-t anaheim,ca

    no definetly not,to allow bars to stay open all night is inviting all kinds of trouble by people getting drunker than normal and comitting all sorts of crimes.we have a 2am bar closing time here in california and thats when the bars should close in washington D.C.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:48 pm |
  74. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    That's a great idea.......that way the bars aren't putting all the drunks out on the street at 2:00 am. They can drink themselves under the table and then stay there – no harm, no foul.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:48 pm |
  75. Colleen, Charlotte, NC


    December 5, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  76. Lynne, Boise, Idaho

    This is America, Jack. It doesn't matter if it is a good idea, just as long as it's good for business.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:50 pm |
  77. Liz in Towson, MD

    Sure, why not! It's a great business decision, and it's not like they'll have to worry about drunk driving, anyway: most people will be taking public transportation to and from DC that entire week, or at least they will if they're smart. Let them eat, drink, and be merry!

    December 5, 2008 at 2:50 pm |
  78. Tom Ft Lauderdale


    Where else is George gonna go

    December 5, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  79. Pugas-AZ

    No. I think it would be asking for trouble. Emotions will be running high and trouble will be waiting to happen. Let's don't blight such a celebration, We want 1/20/09 to start an era of good decision making and responsibility by everyone. It is essential for the country to move forward.

    December 5, 2008 at 2:59 pm |
  80. John, Fort Collins, CO

    This is the inauguration of the President of the United States, not Mardi Gras. This time around, we all have much to celebrate, but being blind drunk at five in the morning isn't a great way to honor Barack Obama's special day.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  81. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    When I first heard this, I thought it was a joke but now realize that this is the truth and frankly find it appalling. I'm not surprised as this is one of the ways our society is showing our own degredation into a people of instant gradification caring nothing for anyone except their pocketbooks. I'm gald I'll be at home and not on the highway.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:05 pm |
  82. Ana, Massachusetts

    This how I see it: happy drunks = more beer = more beer production and cab drivers = more work = overtime labor = temporary job placements = temp increase of stock market. A ripple effect that can give us tax payers a 1 week break from this horrid economy. Hey Jack, interested in joining us for a Guinness Beer?

    Ana, Massachusetts

    December 5, 2008 at 3:07 pm |
  83. PoliticoMike

    With all the hype on Obama and places capitalizing on him, I think we might just get the country out of recession by Inauguration night. LOL

    December 5, 2008 at 3:15 pm |
  84. Terry in Hanover County

    That sure puts a strain on the D.C. police. Who's going to pay for their overtime? Not to mention who's going to clean up the mess in the streets after the party is over? Will the Metro and buses run 24 hours? The good news it will boost employment and business income temporarily in that area. The bad news is that a bunch of politicians will be running amok. Okay, so the bad news is nothing new. Go for it.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  85. chris south bend Indiana

    Jack sure thing for a night that important it will be thank god they are gone and thank god the new is in I just hope i don't feel that way next time

    December 5, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  86. me46

    Come to Las Vegas on New Year's Eve and try standing in one place without getting trampled and I'll let you know.
    Sin City

    December 5, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  87. william fitzwater

    I don't think it is a good idea. If bars stay open too long it could encourage reckless behaviour. This in turn makes it more complicated for law enforcement .

    December 5, 2008 at 3:19 pm |
  88. Kay Ann, NYC

    Absolutely....can u say P-A-R-T-Y!

    December 5, 2008 at 3:22 pm |
  89. Judy, Exeter, Calif,

    Sure it is. It'll be good for the economy, and besides the Republicans in congress will need a place to drown their sorrows. They should leave them open for the next four years, maybe things will improve in Washington.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:23 pm |
  90. Jerry from Jacksonville

    Yes, I think all the bars in the U.S. should stay open for the four days, that way we can all get drunk and celebrate Shrub Bush and his band of thieves leaving office and hopefully Washington.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:25 pm |
  91. Jay in Atlanta

    Nobody outside of D.C. cares. But then, what else is new?

    December 5, 2008 at 3:27 pm |
  92. s buczak

    yikes....this is an accident waiting to happen....

    December 5, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  93. Lynn, CA

    Absolutely NOT! It's just asking for trouble not to have ALL bars closed for at least 36 hours starting with 1AM Inauguration Day – people should be able to attend a celebration, some with their children, and not have to worry about a bunch of drunks. If people want to drink let them plan ahead to attend a private party or go home and drink themselves stupid, but not afflict their behavior on the majority of the country who see this as a momentus, first in history, occasion. Lynn, San Diego County

    December 5, 2008 at 3:31 pm |
  94. George

    Just like any other city that is having a hugh event, they are going to stay open, and take in as much cash as they can. Washington is no different than Louisville before the Kentucky Derby, or Indianapolis, and the Indy 500, or Pasadena and the Rosebowl, or any city where the Super Bowl is being played. Let the booze flow !!!

    December 5, 2008 at 3:32 pm |
  95. Marie Ontario

    Keeping bars closed in the waning hours of the day during the inauguration celebrations will be just about as effective as prohibition was in the roariing 20's.

    People who want to drink during this period of time don't need an open bar to indulge so it is unlikely closing any of the bars will have any extra sobering results. So rock on America and enjoy yourselves.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:32 pm |
  96. Sid...Texas

    Why not? Seriously Jack, would anybody notice the difference?

    December 5, 2008 at 3:33 pm |
  97. Shane in Boston

    This is without a doubt the best thing that could happen to our country, because you know those closet alcoholics, otherwise known as "elected officials", can't hold their liquor, would go and do something stupid and would be forced into early retirement, thus prompting a widespread change in our capitol and FINALLY, we might just get something done. Absolutely a brilliant idea!

    December 5, 2008 at 3:36 pm |
  98. Shmoo, Janesville WI

    Jack, why only keep them open in D.C.? The rest of us need to drink around the clock, too, so we can forget about all the troubles of the past 8 years. Pour me a double!

    December 5, 2008 at 3:36 pm |
  99. Veronica in Virginia

    A few million people in DC to welcome our new president is a wonderful thing, but not drunk. People can drink without getting drunk, if I went to DC on Jan. 20th, I'd have a few beer's myself, along with a few tears of joy. I bet Bush will be drunk on that day, Lol that's another reason to drink....Bush will be gone!

    December 5, 2008 at 3:38 pm |
  100. David Pickett Janesville WI

    96 hours of binge drinking for large crowds always ends well.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:38 pm |
  101. Michael Voorhees, New Jersey

    As a DC resident who plans to be in a great mood and in attendance at the Innaguration, I say, yes it is!

    December 5, 2008 at 3:38 pm |
  102. David Pickett Janesville WI

    Why is Jack Daniels getting a bailout check?

    December 5, 2008 at 3:41 pm |
  103. David,San Bernardino,CA.

    The United States has been on a drunken binge for the last eight years,why should we stop now?

    December 5, 2008 at 3:41 pm |
  104. Chryssa

    It's not a good idea for any town's bars to be open 24 hours a day for any number of days, so I'm gonna say no.

    Boise, ID

    December 5, 2008 at 3:42 pm |
  105. David Pickett Janesville WI

    It might keep the alcohol sector from needing a bail-out.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:42 pm |
  106. Lucy from Massachusetts

    Close the bars on time. Even in New Orleans , on Mardi Gras night when the clock strikes 12am the party is over, bars which usually stay open until 4:am close, and everybody gets off of the streets.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:44 pm |
  107. Kim, Dodge City, Kansas

    Washington D.C. has never felt the urge to shackel itself with the constraints of common sense, logic, prudence or good judgement, so why start now? Some will get drunk because they feel victorious, some will get drunk because they feel defeated, and some will get drunk and get behind the wheel and kill someone.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:45 pm |
  108. Tripp Mechanicsburg, PA

    Someone whose opinion matters must think it is a good idea. As for me, I don't like being around those who are inebriated at any time, much less 24 hours a day. Businesses that stay open 24/7 might benefit, but where people lose their inhibitions to alcohol, somebody is going to get hurt.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:52 pm |
  109. Jay in Texas

    While I can understand the Democrats needing a few drinks to console themselves about being deluded into believing Obama was any different from John McCain, I suggest they just buy a bottle and take it to their hotel room and drink there where they don't jeopardize others' lives.
    Brownwood, Texas

    December 5, 2008 at 3:54 pm |
  110. Deliciousone in Washington

    Jack, Think of the restaurant workers, they will receive a little extra in tips and the restaurants will help with keeping 5 million people happy.
    An extended 3 hours for happy hour. Yes we can!

    December 5, 2008 at 3:57 pm |
  111. Clincher 33139

    Forget the bars being open till 05:00. Think of the need of public toilets that are going to be required for the 'party'. Just the approximate total of chartered buses is about 10,000; or about 80 miles if they're lined up bumper to bumper. Add to that private vehicles and about 3.5 million people and DC is going to be a pretty nasty place after the Inaguration.

    December 5, 2008 at 3:58 pm |
  112. Bryan from Colorado Springs, CO

    This a good idea to have the bars open all night on this joyfull day. If we closed them I'm sure the bar ownwers would be the next to go in front of congress asking for a bail out.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  113. David

    Why. Isn't the crime rate high in DC already,

    December 5, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  114. Pete from Atlantic Highlands, NJ

    Sure. It's a tremendous business opportunity in this down economy. Barflies always seem to have money to spend on booze. Besides, how much trouble can you cause in a bar? As long as there are enough cops to keep an eye on patrons after they leave the bar, it shouldn't be too bad. The city should be able to make some money from disorderly conduct fines, too.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  115. L. Mccullough

    Why not!!! The people who can't find rooms available need a place to stay and the money they spend will help the economy of
    Washington DC.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:04 pm |
  116. Mike out West

    If they are serving alcohol at private parties all night long, why not level the playing field?

    Besides, the bar owners need the business far more than some private party planner charging attendees more than some people make in a year.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:04 pm |
  117. garrick

    hi jack
    well i hope they have alot of soap & water toothpaste and deoderant ,for all the people that cant find hotels and will make the bars their homes for 4 days,

    December 5, 2008 at 4:04 pm |
  118. Gigi in Alabama

    That's a dumb idea. There is enough crazies in our nation's capital without adding crazy drunks to the list. It might be better to make sure the bars are closed 24 hours a day instead.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  119. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    It sure will contribute to the >flow> of money!

    December 5, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  120. Brian Miami, FL

    Absolute (ly)!

    The more time celebrating the exit of "W", the happier we'll all be!

    As a matter of fact, bars in all cities across the world should stay open the entire night of 1/20/09 so that the entire world can celebrate the exit of the criminal with us...

    December 5, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  121. Howard M. Bolingbrook IL

    The inauguration has little to do with the with bars staying open all night.
    The bars being open overnight has a lot more to do with the commercial benefits to Washington D.C.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:15 pm |
  122. Steve

    Stupid idea.
    People can get enough alcohol in 15 hours a day

    December 5, 2008 at 4:15 pm |
  123. Juanita

    No, nothing should be scaled back. This is the people's president and any one that can attend should – and the more events to attend the better.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:17 pm |
  124. Robert In Alabama

    I lived in New Orleans for years. All the bars in the French Quarter never closed and it was not a problem because it was in a small confined area where there could be an overwelming police presence. If Washington wants the bars in a small, confined area to stay opened, OK. If they want all the bars in the city to stay opened, have alotof body bags available.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  125. Linda in Bisbee, AZ

    Absolutely NOT. There will be enough drunks mucking up the ceremony as it is. At least cut them off at 2 AM.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:21 pm |
  126. Les Oklahoma

    I guess the Bar owner will be wanting a bail out if they close the Bars however whiskey is supposed to be the most depression resistant business there is.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:22 pm |
  127. sandy in ohio

    It's not the bars being open 24 hours that worries me; it's the people consuming all that alcohol. People who get drunk often become violent and the last thing we need at the inauguration is violence. I'm sure that if there are any problems Obama will take the blame, but I don't think this was his idea or anyone close to him. But we all know how people love to fix blame when something goes wrong.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:27 pm |
  128. Allen in Avondale, PA

    They should stay open all night and all the next day. Getting rid of the worst President and Vice President in history is reason enough.

    I do not drink much but this may temp me to really tie one on.

    I am a 66 year old INDEPENDENT and this administration is the worst in my recollection.

    I hope this country has not been damaged beyond repair.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:27 pm |
  129. Tino

    I don't care, I live in NYC. Besides how much more damage can they do in Washington than what the gov-heads have already done!? For all I care they can burn it to the ground.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:27 pm |
  130. Pat-Arizona

    Good for the bars, but does D.C. really need a million or so drunken bums wandering around?

    December 5, 2008 at 4:28 pm |
  131. Amy, Canton, OH

    Great idea!!!! Make mine a double!!!!

    December 5, 2008 at 4:30 pm |
  132. Amy

    Sure let them stay open ,
    but let the last call for alcohol be at 2 AM. And not serving it again until
    noon the next day.
    People can celebrate without drinking themself silly ! !

    December 5, 2008 at 4:33 pm |
  133. Angel

    Yes...it will be a tourist night and good for business especially in this economy...

    December 5, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  134. Joe in MO

    Bad idea. The crowds will be hard enough to control without the added liquor sales.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:37 pm |
  135. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    It's still a free country. If they don't drink in bars, they'll just drink in hotel rooms, so what's the difference? They did repeal the ban on guns though and that could be worrisome. Hope nobody gets hurt. Joyful days ahead. Can't wait to watch them on TV. Drunks can be very entertaining.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:38 pm |
  136. ingrid, new york

    to each his own manner of celebration and celebrate we must!
    the 20th will be the true "new years" eve. for 2009.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:39 pm |
  137. Allen Warren, Hockessin, DE


    Let the booze flow. A famous man once said, “I drink to forget”.

    Will one night be enough to let us and the world forget the torturing of prisoners, attacking another nation without cause, allowing our veteran’s hospitals to become rat infested, our tax money spent on a war that should never have been fought, how the rich got richer and the poor got poorer, and the list goes on and on.

    I think I’ll have a double!

    December 5, 2008 at 4:40 pm |
  138. Otto

    Why Not! It is not only a time of celebration but with the economy the way it is these places need the revenue!!

    December 5, 2008 at 4:41 pm |
  139. John

    Jack: I think 18 hours aday is enough drinking. We want people to remember their time in Washington DC. Give the police a break.


    December 5, 2008 at 4:43 pm |
  140. maggie from NJ

    No. Why encourage idiots more than you have to. I do believe that Obama's inauguration is a momentus and historic occasion and we should all celebrate, but between New Year's Eve and the Super Bowl there will be enough boozing going on. Of course, the boost to the economy and liquor industry would be nice....

    December 5, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  141. Mike - Hot Springs, Arkansas

    Sure why not. Might as well have one last celebration before the country goes broke. This may be the last chance to celebrate. Things are looking very bleak.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  142. Mike, Albuquerque, NM

    That would create jobs, wouldn't it!
    Just as long as they stop serving booze at the hour the law demands.

    December 5, 2008 at 4:51 pm |
  143. Tim

    Sure. There are no hotel rooms available & this way they can all just live in the bars for a few days. So, sure, keep the bars open, but close the roads.
    Tim in Texas

    December 5, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  144. karen-phoenix


    December 5, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  145. Roger in Ca.

    NO. If the expected turnout is going to be as big as perdicted they will run out of booze in one day anyway.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:09 pm |
  146. D - Atlanta, GA

    I suppose it’s a good idea for those of them travelling to DC for the inauguration that does not have a place to stay. Why not just pull up to the bar and drink yourself into a stupor (NOT!!!). It’ll be job security for the bar owners, waiters/waitresses and most certainly for the DC police department as they have to deal with the drunk and unruly crowds.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:09 pm |
  147. Len of Colfax, WI

    No! I believe that there could be a “better” celebration of this tremendous historic event if people didn’t attempt to see if every available drop of alcohol is consumed during the four days. The over consumption of alcohol by keeping the bars open will just dull the overall importance of Barack Obama’s inauguration.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:10 pm |
  148. odessa

    yes as long the police and bar owners are watching people for heavy drinking so one can't get hurt..

    December 5, 2008 at 5:11 pm |
  149. Daniel, Indiana

    It is quite apparent that there are problems with bars and drinking. I don't think it is a wise thing to do when the DC police department will be stressed enough with all the people attending the inaugration. Adding that many more out of control drunks to the mix will be a sure indication of unnecessary police abuse and use of force. People act foolish enough when they have been drinking without encouraging them to drink for two more hours.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:15 pm |
  150. Kieth Wagner

    Yes it will help the economy.......NOT

    December 5, 2008 at 5:15 pm |
  151. gerry

    It's unfortunate that some feel the way to celebrate this historic occasion is to spend all night in a bar. One night, maybe, 4 nights-someone is going to regret this move.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:20 pm |
  152. Jeff

    Sure, the police will be spread thin with the influx of party-goers into D.C., but a drunk is easier to catch than someone who is sober. The real question should be; Where are they going to hold all the people they arrest? One city councilor said it best when he implied that the city could use the extra tax revenue generated by the extended hours.
    Ashburnham, Massachusetts

    December 5, 2008 at 5:21 pm |
  153. Kal'el

    Of course it's a GREAT GREAT GREAT idea. I'll be turning 21 exactly a week before inauguration and I plan to go to inauguration with all my friends, so this will be the perfect birthday present.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:23 pm |
  154. Matt

    The bars should stay open. America right now needs a greater cash flow. With the huge crowds expected there the bars could turn a record profit.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:23 pm |
  155. Michael MacDonald

    They should stay open till 2:00 AM for happy Democrats and from then till noon for miserable Republicans only.. The latter will need all they can drink to drown their sorrows.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:25 pm |
  156. Bill in Albuquerque

    Well you can go to Las Vegas and party all night so why not Washington, D.C.? And since it's only for a few days, what's the big deal? People need to lighten up. Sure there will be a few idiots who abuse the longer hours but there would be plenty of idiots if the bars closed at 2:00 a.m. anyway.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:28 pm |
  157. Mike in Akron, Ohio

    Why not? Haven’t we all been smashed with the last eight years of turmoil? Why not get intoxicated on a possible way out of this mess?

    December 5, 2008 at 5:31 pm |
  158. Tim

    Now I love a drink as much as the next guy...but I fail to see why a crowd of shnockered people at 4am roaming around the city is a proper celebration and not a safety concern....the simple fact this is being allowed is because of the financial gain to the city.....take the party back to your hotel room if you really need a 24/7 buzz.....i don't need that outside my apartment all night....

    December 5, 2008 at 5:33 pm |
  159. Ed Woodbridge,Va.

    Simply put, this idea is a recipe for disaster, and whoever came up with the idea to keeps bars open 24/7, during the inauguration should have his/her head examined, and soon! Metropolitan Police will be overwhelmed with arrests, and handling other emergencies, and they will be stretched very thin! Hopefully common sense prevails in the D.C. government, and this legislation is repealed ASAP!

    December 5, 2008 at 5:34 pm |
  160. Fav from Colorado

    No God no!! Doing that will only cause mayhem!
    This inauguration is a mighty special one – alcohol should not form a part of it! Perhaps for the evening celebrations after the inauguration but not before and certainly not on the day.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:35 pm |
  161. Diane Memphis

    No. I do not think it is a wise idea.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:36 pm |
  162. Still Ecstatic Obama-ite

    What makes those people who are against this think that people won't be drinking just because the bars aren't open? Honestly, encourage people to go get overly drunk in the bars, and then lock them in, where they can do less damage than they would on the streets.

    I shall be raising a glass in celebration from home!

    December 5, 2008 at 5:36 pm |
  163. Marva, DC

    I think it should just be for the inaugural night. D.C. is not New Orleans. This is not a party city. I think the mayor is just asking for trouble. He's young, and he'll learn. There will be more crimes throughout that period than he can imagine. With 4 million people in town, you want the bars closed at a reasonable time.

    Plus, people have to get up and go to work the next day.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:43 pm |
  164. Jennifer, Minnesota

    Jack, I'll take a double and eight years of leadership by a thoughtful, intelligent President Obama.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:43 pm |
  165. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    Throwing gasoline on a fire will always cause it to burn hotter. Allowing people to drink longer is real dangerous and there will be some major problems that people will look back and say the money that the bars, etc. made wasn't worth it either but oh well that's life in America.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:46 pm |
  166. Heidi, CA

    It's going to be cold, so the bars are going to be filled with people. Georgetown, Adams Morgan, Connecticut Avenue, Chinatown, Capitol Hill–fun, fun, fun.

    Take it from a Washingtonian, fun, fun, fun.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:47 pm |

    if the bars have never been open all night before they shoud'nt be aloud to stay open for the inaugaration, people might get to sauced and create havoc on such a well look for event. hold the sauce i say, i cant stand to see drunks ruin a great well awaited day. carolyn ca.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:51 pm |
  168. Eli

    It's a damn good idea. After eight years of minority (GOP) rule, this town deserves a good bender.

    Come to think of it, considering how bad the economy is getting, the rest of the country could stand to follow suit as well. God knows they could use it!

    December 5, 2008 at 5:52 pm |
  169. Dan - Washington DC

    I thank all the people who don't live in DC for their concern, but letting people go home at their own pace, rather than everyone at 2am, will ease congestion, limit drunken conflicts and help the crush on DC's arcane taxi infrastructure.

    December 5, 2008 at 5:53 pm |
  170. Lynn Brooks, Sioux Falls, SD

    NO!!! Remember the RIOTS from 1966?!?!?!!?

    December 5, 2008 at 5:54 pm |
  171. David in Moscow, ID


    Why does everyone think this is President-elect Obama's call, I think that is your answer right there... if there is any problems... they will be attributed to the president-elect, not to the mayor. So they should keep the bars closed, why give opponents useless fodder to hamper his ability to get real progress.


    December 5, 2008 at 5:56 pm |
  172. Paul Round Rock, Texas

    It will good for the bottom line of all the Bars. It will be good for the Republicans to drown in sorrow of their defeat in the elections all over the country. It will also be good for the Democrats that want to party about the big Wins they had. Jack it will also be good for the people that really don't care about anything.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:04 pm |
  173. Ann from Newton, New Jersey

    Aren't there enough accidents from drunken drivers without giving them an invitaiton to belly up to the bar all night? Stupid idea!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:05 pm |
  174. Michael, New Jersey

    Certainly, Jack, I'll definitely drink to that. When Obama is inaugurated, there will definitely be major celebrations, and what better way to celebrate than going to the bar and drowning five shots of malt liquor. As I said, I'll drink to that.
    PS: and I will certainly go to the bar and celebrate if my comment is read on TV.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:06 pm |
  175. Liz in California

    Bad idea. If people want to drink past the usual curfew, they should take responsibility for doing so someplace where they don't endanger others. Think of the drain on taxpayer dollars from overburdened police, fire departments, hospitals, etc. just to protect the egos of irresponsible people. Haven't we protected enough egos already????

    December 5, 2008 at 6:07 pm |
  176. Ray Victory

    Vero Beach, FL
    Probably better to have the bars open than riots in the streets because they're closed. A lot of people have a lot to celebrate!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:10 pm |
  177. Tyson

    Sure its a good idea, that way all the law makers can drown all of their economic stresses. In fact i think we should do this nation wide, so all the american citizens can escape reality.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:13 pm |
  178. Matt Wolf

    D.C. bars usually serve alcoholic beverages until 3am on weekends. Under the inauguration plan, bars will serve until 5am, and food may be served all night. Not a big difference and not a big deal - cities like New York and Chicago have similar or more permissive laws, and they do fine. Let the good times roll to celebrate this historic event!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:13 pm |
  179. lashawn tavernier, Orlando, Fl

    As excited as I am about the inauguration I don't think it's a good idea to keep bars and restaurants open 24 hrs. Washington DC has a problems controlling crime on a regualar basis yet alone with the triple amount of people that will be in the city during this time. Too much partying could acutually be a bad thing.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:13 pm |
  180. Sonny


    We all know that liberals are a little on the wild side…. but millions of then with access to bars 24 hours a day may be a little over the top…

    December 5, 2008 at 6:14 pm |
  181. nickster

    What a great idea! Since the Wash., D.C. area has one of the highest crime rates in the country, hand guns should be passed out also. That's the ticket! Let the people of Wash., D.C. party on!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:14 pm |
  182. Stephen Bennett

    Yes, it is brilliant. Provides shelter, restrooms, places to eat and recognizes the reality of all our visitors celebrating.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:14 pm |
  183. Tom Connolly

    Heck Yeah! Let the people enjoy a return to democracy and an end to the monarchy! This is a defining moment in history! After seeing the unemployment numbers, mortgage meltdown and big 3 failure we might vote to have all bars open 24 hours a day for the next few years!
    Tom Plainfield,IL

    December 5, 2008 at 6:14 pm |
  184. Tibs

    What better place to be than teetering on a barstool in a Washington D.C. bar at 4 in the morning Inauguration Day? You can get a bit tipsy, enjoy the show, then spend the next four days figuring out how you're gonna drive your re-posessed car back to your now-foreclosed home. Talk about a bad hangover...

    December 5, 2008 at 6:14 pm |
  185. Aaron

    This is hard to call. On one hand it makes sense that people will want to celebrate by having a few beers. On the other hand, 24/7 bars will increase the chances of people getting completely wasted. Let's hope most of them will be celebrating responsibly.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:15 pm |
  186. Nancy

    3 million people.
    Unlimited alcohol.
    Bad idea?
    Ya think?

    December 5, 2008 at 6:15 pm |
  187. Dean

    Considering that all of the hotels are booked, and bars are not only bars, but resturants, and offer a place to rest and use a restroom, I
    dont think being open will pose a problem, but offer a convience for the visitors. Drunkards would not travel all the way to DC to get sloshed!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:15 pm |
  188. Lena

    Thousands of excited people + bars open 24/7 = asking for trouble!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:15 pm |
  189. Dee

    No, No, No, why bend the rules for one event? Aside from being the biggest party of the centry it will also go down in the record books for the most drunk driving, indeceint exposure and disturbing the peace incidents in recent history.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:16 pm |
  190. Tony from NYC

    Yes! It's a great idea!!! Don't assume that only alcohol will be consumed. People will get out, they will eat, some will have only soft drinks... Other States should celebrate as well... The goal being to have people spend a little of their money and have a good time, lift spirits... and get the sense of confidence back into the economy. This is a good start.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:16 pm |
  191. rusty in texas

    sure its a good idea......people are gonna be in them from 6pm to 3 or 4 am anyway...i mean im a good drinker but i cant go 24hrs...the human body will se to it that the bars are 90% empty from 5am till 5 pm.....its called passing out.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:16 pm |
  192. Kate M., Washington DC

    While it is not a great idea, it is also not a terrible idea. There is going to be sheer chaos no matter what, and the numbers alone are going to stretch this city's resources, police, transportation, and otherwise, very thin. Now while access to alcohol always brings problems, the people who actually stay out at the bars drinking heavily until 5 or 6 am would probably have brought problems anyway.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:16 pm |
  193. Rick -Omaha, NE


    As we all know, we are currently in a recession. A recession is obviously a decline in GDP for consecutive quarters. 70% of GDP is based on consumer spending. With that being said, i would consider keeping the Washington D.C. bars open 24 hours a day as a way of giving our economy a stimulas package!! Interesting topic to be debating with today being the 75th anniversary that ended prohitbition.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:16 pm |
  194. Godwin

    Jack, its a brilliant idea. At least people will be happy enough to overcome the present economic mess. Something big is happening in the USA and it is worth celebrating. We might never see that day again. A happy people is a healthy nation at least in the short time.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  195. Mark Lovett

    The inauguration of he first black President of the United States is a solemn event in our nation's history.. The extended bar hours being planned in DC and the increased drunkeness and revelry is better suited for St Patrick's Day, not for this momentous occasion.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  196. Gandahi Patel

    Yes it is a very good idea for the city of DC. By keeping these establishments open the city will profit. DC is a city with a poverty problem could really use this cash.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  197. Vanella Jackson-Crawford, Washington, DC

    As a resident of Washington, DC and a supporter of MADD, I am concerned that people will be too much out of hand. I was witness to the celebration in the city after the announcement of Barack Obama as President Elect-it was enthusiastic bedlam. The police were patiently cautious, but I do not know if that patience would last for four days.

    We also have a metro system that stops running at a certain time so if there is not some well thought out planning and coordination, this could be explosive and derail and otherwise wonderful experience.

    Let the coffee shops stay open instead.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  198. Mr. sekou

    This is the worst DC idea since invading iraq. I am a DC bartender and I dred that week. This Little Town is already over whelmed with it's residents, imagine 4 million intoxicated visitors 24 hours a day 4 days straight. Cheers you idiots.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  199. Dave

    Actually, while the bars are open 24/7, they are not allowed to serve alcohol between 5 a.m. and whatever their normal opening time would be. The legislation was passed to make sure everyone isn't spilling onto the streets at closing time, all at once, and that people will have access to FOOD, to soak up all the alcohol they drank during the bar's serving hours.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  200. OHIO-TIM

    Mr. Cafferty

    Apparantly the people who would be attending the inaugration for those four days have jobs and plenty of expendable money to waste on all night drinking binges. Maybe the bar owners could hire some of the 500,000 people who were just recently laid off this past month for the extra security personal that would be needed and help as servers and bartenders to serve the all night partiers. Is this the change that we were told about. Sounds like the same old same old to me.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  201. Sarge

    We should adopt those drinking hours nation-wide for Barack Obama's inaugeration! This should be a time of great celebration.
    I am buying a bottle of Wild Turkey Rare Breed and will taste it with my
    friends as our new President takes his oath. Don't you imagine that the Founding Fathers would approve? Why, we will likely toast them too!


    December 5, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  202. Barbara Backus

    It's a terrible idea. A combination of the huge crowds who'll be in Washington for the inauguration, already in a party mood, with bars open 24 hours invites rowdyism, overindulgence and other sorts of problems.
    Barbara Backus

    December 5, 2008 at 6:18 pm |
  203. Mark, Queen Village Philadelphia, PA

    As a recovering alcoholic I don't encourage binge drinking and support sober living, but in this case, the Republicans might need a friend during the Inauguration. It was that way for Democrats in 2001 and 2005. Personally sober living was essential no matter the political climate and proud to say I am surviving the Bush Administration sober since December 1, 2001. After eleven months it wasn't worth destroying my personal life while GW destroyed the collective US-A! So January 20th it will be worth celebrating Bush, Cheney and Rice being the EXES of Evil, sober or not.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:18 pm |
  204. David


    Can you imagine the nightmare that would ensue if hundreds of thousands of drunk out-of-towners were all unleashed at once – last call? Take a lesson from the wonderful, enchanting city of New Orleans and let there be a slow trickle of revelers.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:18 pm |
  205. Marie

    YES the bars should stay open. I was a student in Washington DC and Baltimore. Even when I was in Baltimore I came to DC to socialize and have fun.
    Bars in DC are not just places to drink, they provide public arenas to network and fellowship. BUT if the bars stay open 24 hours then the metro should also run for 24 hours. My personal favorite bar hopping metro line? The red line Martinis at Maggianos, to $2 beer in Adams Morgan all courtesy of the red line.
    This would also give DC a huge economy boost and promote the city. I would be there myself, but the economy is so bad I can't afford to go. And the poor economy is the only reason I left the district.

    Marie from Connecticut.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:19 pm |
  206. Jonathan

    The plan seems foolproof. What could possibly go wrong?

    December 5, 2008 at 6:21 pm |
  207. Terry Gourdine


    Absolutely! It will keep the drunks off D.C’s streets and roads!

    Terry Gourdine
    Clearwater, FL

    December 5, 2008 at 6:21 pm |
  208. Shaun Priest

    Sure why not? It should be called the 4 day bailout for the beverge industy

    December 5, 2008 at 6:22 pm |
  209. Holden Caulfield -New York

    How better to get over an 8 year old hangover than to drink late into the night, early into the afternoon, and repeat; as many times as needed to forget the last 8 years of failured economic policies

    December 5, 2008 at 6:22 pm |
  210. SD

    What is wrong with a celebration of one of the most historic moments in our nation's history? It has been a while since Americans rallied and celebrated something as a country.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:22 pm |
  211. Shaun

    I think that this is a terrible idea. Inauguration should be a time for sober celebration, not drunken mumbling about how all of our woes will change. Even though I'm a Republican and voted for John McCain, I think that out of respect for the gravity of the swearing-in of our new president, it's only proper to maintain a level of decency, a level of seriousness, and a level of joyous solemnity.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:22 pm |
  212. Scott

    Bars open all night long for presidents taking oath? WOW Hope he can pay for it all this ( not just Finacilly either) ...

    Scott Aiken , South Carolina

    December 5, 2008 at 6:22 pm |
  213. Godwin

    Jack its a brilliant idea. Americans may never see that day again.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:23 pm |
  214. Chris

    What gave them the right to make them close the rest of the time in the first place?

    December 5, 2008 at 6:23 pm |
  215. William V

    In general, this will be a happy crowd – Peace, Love & Obama... New Orleans, Las Vegas, and others have managed to survive 24 hour access to alcohol – why not DC?!?! Party on Dems, and with a a bit of social lubricant, perhaps the 4 million plus can solve all the Worlds' problems! Cheers!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:23 pm |
  216. rusty in rockwall texas

    yes its a good idea.....the bars will only be packed from 6pm till 4 am anyway.....the human body will see to it....its called passing out.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:24 pm |
  217. Dr Abdoulaye GAYE, Senegalese american educated

    Good Idea when you consider this as a baillout for this driving tourism sector. When more than 5 millions folks gather for 4 consecutive days; it is good for D.C. economy.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:26 pm |
  218. Mike Jacobsen

    Is this just another example of greed taking precedent over common sense; in this case over "an event that is a genuine cause for sober and joyful celebrationl"?

    December 5, 2008 at 6:27 pm |
  219. Chris

    Yes they should, all of the time, anywhere. It's time to end these blue laws. Any business can be open any time it wishes. You can't prevent people from making mistakes by simply giving them less hours to make them.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:28 pm |
  220. Mark

    It is incredible how anal the American public can be regarding things like this. What is the big deal? The police say they will be spread to thin...maybe its because we live in a land where everything is considered illegal in some form or another. Let people live, be free to celebrate...by keeping the bars open for that period of time is not going to be the end of the world. With the state our country is in I think its a great idea to allow people to really celebrate one of the few things we can celebrate nowadays

    December 5, 2008 at 6:28 pm |
  221. Amanda

    Of course it is a good idea! Besides the financial impact it will have for the local bar owners, just think of all of the resources the police will save by not having cite people for violating the normal rules. And really, isn't it a relief to have a reason to celebrate?
    Malone, NY

    December 5, 2008 at 6:28 pm |
  222. megan lewis

    heck yeah! as someone who will be there in d.c. and as one who enjoyed the mass jubilation on election night while in boston, open bars will be icing on the cake for the mass jubilation and hope this country has earned.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:28 pm |
  223. JC

    Institute a policy for free or reduce cab fares ("Sober Rides"), like DC does for other holidays that are associated with drinking, and it'll be fine.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:28 pm |
  224. Jacqueline

    -Jack, they should keep the bars open...This is an historic event, we should be able to party for 4 days. I think people will be on their best behavior! After Bush, this should not even be an issue!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:29 pm |
  225. Bert Morgan

    Craziest thing I ever heard of.Will be nothing but trouble.
    I live near Phila and look what they did to the city after the Phillies won?they tore up the city.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:29 pm |
  226. LibertyAnne in DC

    Sure. I live on Capitol Hill and walk everywhere and there's a cool strip on PA Ave nearby. It will be fun to see everyone having a good time. It's time this town loosens up a little.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:29 pm |
  227. Heather

    This is not the super bowl.. it's an inauguration for goodness sakes!!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:29 pm |
  228. Ted

    I think it's a great idea. I wish other cities would do the same just for this one special night. I think it will help the economy too!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:30 pm |
  229. Josh


    Spilling millions into the streets at 2 a.m., ALL AT ONCE, is recipe for disaster. Many will leave early, many will leave late. Many won't leave at all. Expecting them to all leave at once is madness.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:31 pm |
  230. Charles Johnston

    No, What are they thinking? A celebration is one thing an invitation to drink all night in public will lead to, at the very least, indiscretions by even the most proper and intelligent Obama supporter. This has all the earmarks of a hugh PR disaster for the new administration. Call Pres.elect Obama-hey, call Michelle she won't let the party get out of hand.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:31 pm |
  231. Bob (Illinois)

    That is a terminally stupid idea!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:31 pm |
  232. Carlos

    It's a great idea, and it should be extended nation-wide, year round. Ask any cop and he'll tell you that alcohol-related problems start when the bars close and the patrons all pour out of the bars at the same time. No closing time, no problem.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:32 pm |
  233. David

    This inauguration will make the million man march look like a cub scout meeting. Good way to clean out your warrant drawer though huh?

    December 5, 2008 at 6:32 pm |
  234. Khalid Ali

    Hey Jack I don't drink, but i support whatever could possibbly help the american people get their minds off these rough times. Or it could be that the bars and resturant industry is next on the list to ask for a bail out package this could help.

    khalid Ali

    Toronto, Canada

    December 5, 2008 at 6:34 pm |
  235. Nate

    The comments from Texans stuck in a Prohibition mindset are hilarious!

    I thought this country promoted freedom and personal responsibility? I should be free to purchase alcohol 24/7 if I choose.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:34 pm |
  236. Carolyn

    Americans haven't really had a whole lot to celebrate lately. Each day the economic situation worsens and people become more demoralized. I say why not let the bars stay open and give people the opportunity to celebrate the Inaguration if they so choose.

    Carolyn in Gainesville, FL

    December 5, 2008 at 6:34 pm |
  237. tori

    What? You have got to be kidding me. Does DC really need money that bad that way??? I mean tickets and not the bars.......

    December 5, 2008 at 6:35 pm |
  238. Colleen Springfield MO

    No, is it worth the chance of one drunk driver, one dead mom, dad, daughter or son? Have a great time, drink in moderation...have a Starbucks and then go home.....or call a cab...

    December 5, 2008 at 6:35 pm |
  239. Overby

    Anybody that would be drinking in a bar at 4 a.m. would be drinking in their hotel room at 4 a.m. if the bars were closed, so it doesn't matter.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:35 pm |
  240. Nancy

    I think it's in poor taste and a bad idea. So many drunk people in one town isn't what I would call a good time.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:35 pm |
  241. J Q public

    Not A good Idea.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:37 pm |
  242. Mack

    Evidently they came from homes where the saying, "Nothing good goes on after midnight". They think they are in New Orleans evidently.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:37 pm |
  243. Melanie in DC

    As a resident of NW DC, i have to vote for keeping the party going. People are going to be staying 5 and 6 to a studio apartment that week, and everyone will need a release and a place to go celebrate.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:37 pm |
  244. Jim X.

    YES. Beef up the police force by drawing police forces from other counties or surrounding areas. Most problem related to alcohol and bars are after the bars are closed when drunks and party goers look for more places to drink or things to do. Keep the booze flowing and party going, I don't think people be looking for trouble then.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:37 pm |
  245. Ryan - Porltand

    Bars are a perfect place to create camaraderie and bring together people from all walks of life. This will provide a great avenue to connect and celebrate this historic event. Do you celebrate New Years with a warm glass of milk all by yourself?

    December 5, 2008 at 6:38 pm |
  246. Ryan Spector


    With everyone losing their jobs and out of work where else is there to go! I'll be at the bars.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:38 pm |
  247. ChicagoSuz

    Umm... that would be a big NO!

    (guess what city I'm in... 😉

    December 5, 2008 at 6:39 pm |
  248. Alex Syracuse, New York

    I think it is a great idea for all of the bars to be open around the clock. This is an important time in our history and it should be celebrated by all. The old way of doing things is over and it is time to welcome a new future to the United States of America.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:39 pm |
  249. Arsene, Los Angeles

    Absolutely. Why shouldn't the city benefit from such a huge historic event? If the country can elect a man that's actually qualified for the job for once, they should be able to have a good time in moderation, and remember their manners, or learn some manners before they get there.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:39 pm |
  250. Lorraine from San Diego, CA

    You know what this means, Jack? Frat boys and booze hounds across the nation will think they've died and gone to heaven.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:39 pm |
  251. SCOTT

    I believe that it's a terrible idea. With the world's eyes focused on America, the last thing that we need is the opportunity for another black eye. Why not save the all night partying until after the work is done???

    Common Sense,
    Petal, MS

    December 5, 2008 at 6:40 pm |
  252. eric in colorado

    Jack: If we wind up with a 24/7 situation in D.C. the next step would be a slogan that says: "What happens in D.C. stays in D.C."

    December 5, 2008 at 6:40 pm |
  253. Joanna

    bad idea bad idea. serving alchohol 24/7 is not a good thing and will stress the police department. stop serving alcohol at 2 am. that is enough partying. this is the stupidest idea ever!!!

    December 5, 2008 at 6:41 pm |
  254. don in naples, florida

    silly question... Focus on the economy.. we don't care about alcohol.

    December 5, 2008 at 6:42 pm |