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(WASHINGTON) — Construction began today on the steps of the U.S. Capitol to construct the platform where either Gov. Mitt Romney or President Obama will take the oath of office in January.

Leaders from the House and the Senate marked the occasion by ceremonially hammering in the first nails to the stage which will host the next president’s inauguration on Jan. 21, 2013 on the West Front of the United States Capitol.

The inaugural platform will seat about 1,600 people including former presidents, members of Congress, cabinet officials, joint chiefs and diplomats and serves as the backdrop for arguably the most important inauguration day image when a candidate turns into a president while taking the oath.

The West Front of the U.S. Capitol will be closed to visitors from now until Inauguration Day while construction is completed.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


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