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Saturday, 20 January, 2001, 12:16 GMT
Bush: Who's protesting and why
A previous protest by black votersby Jesse Jackson
Black voters maintain they were cheated
All of Washington's 3,600 police officers are on duty on Saturday to prevent disruption to the inauguration of George W Bush as President.

But anti-Bush groups are hoping for the biggest protests since the inauguration of Richard Nixon in 1973.

Voter March demands
New rules to ensure fair vote counting
Abolition of the electoral college
Campaign finance reform
Find ways to overcome voter apathy
On that occasion, 60,000 people turned up to vent their anger at the Vietnam war.

This time, the authorities are anxious to prevent any repetition of the violent clashes that have marked recent high-profile events such as the World Trade Organisation talks in Seattle.

'Day of Resistance'

"There are a lot of moderate-thinking Americans out there wondering how we got to this point - not only why Bush is president, but why his cabinet nominations are so far to the right," said Bob Rogers of the group Voter March.

Voter March is part of a coalition of groups, including the National Organisation of Women and the National Action Network, that have called for Saturday to be a non-violent 'Day of Resistance' to the presidency of Mr Bush.

Flags adorn Capitol Hill
Capitol Hill gets ready for Mr Bush
They are hoping 20,000 protesters will turn up, though the icy conditions in Washington could lower the political heat.

Much of the protesters' anger is focused on the disputed vote-counting in Florida and the allegations of party bias among Florida state officials and in the Federal Supreme Court.

For the first time at an inauguration, crowds will have to pass through a series of checkpoints.

'Logistical nightmare'

A federal judge, Gladys Kessler, rejected an appeal that the checkpoints violated demonstrators' rights. But she warned that the barriers sounded like a "logistical nightmare".

The demonstrators will almost certainly be vastly outnumbered by hundreds of thousands of ordinary citizens wanting to witness the presidential parade as it passes up Pennsylvania Avenue, which links the White House to Capitol Hill - the seat of the Congress.

Washington police will be supported by more than 1,000 officers drafted in from other areas. And nearly 3,000 secret service agents will be on duty.

In Florida, black groups, which claimed victimisation on voting day, are to hold more protests.

However, the black civil rights leader, Jesse Jackson, is no longer expected to attend following the revelation that he fathered an illegitimate child two years ago.

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