As the world welcomed President Donald Trump to his new position, some Forsyth County Republicans were in attendance.
Forsyth County Republican Party Chairwoman Carolyn Hall Fisher and Joel Natt, a Republican appointee to the county’s Board of Voter Registrations and Elections, were able to speak on Friday just hours after the inauguration.
When asked about the day’s atmosphere, Fisher had a simple response.
“It was an American atmosphere,” she said. “It was so patriotic. The people when walking down to the Capitol were just so thrilled and so excited about what was getting ready to happen. Everything was so well organized.
“People just couldn’t wait for him to get there, and when he finally got there, the place just went nuts.”
The previous evening, Fisher said she attended the Georgia Society Ball, a black-tie event at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.
“It was just absolutely elegant, so lovely,” Fisher said. “I ran into a lot of people from all over the state, and everyone was in such a wonderful mood.”
Among the attendees was Sonny Perdue, who is Trump’s pick for agriculture secretary.
Natt said he and his wife, Heather, did not attend any of the main festivities on Thursday, instead taking in the city and meeting with other locals in attendance. He called the inauguration “historic and “a privilege to attend.”
“It was a unique atmosphere in all. It was very exciting. Everybody was excited to be there and participate,” he said. “You could tell there was a lot of planning and organization to get everyone in for the inauguration, a lot of security so you felt safe and not worried.”
He said he met with District 7 U.S. Rep. Rob Woodall and walked from his office to the inauguration, where Natt was struck by the opening and closing prayers.
“We stayed until the very end, and I think something that really stood out was the diverse religions that led the invocation at the beginning and the benediction at the end,” Natt said. “It started with a Roman Catholic cardinal from New York and ended with a rabbi from L.A.”
Natt said there was bitterness between Democrats and Republicans after the heated election and comments made by Trump on social media but that felt it was time to move forward as a country and give Trump a chance.
“You have to have an open mind and you have to give every person a chance and opportunity,” he said. “If we can’t do that, then we’re never going to live up to what the founding fathers thought we were capable of.”
As an election official, Natt said being present at the inauguration was coming full circle and that he hoped election officials would come back for the inauguration in 2021.
“It’s nice to see the true end of the election process,” Natt said. “To witness the transition of power was the end of that, and it was a little bit fulfilling and special to me.
“I hope in four years either myself, or if a Democrat wins, one of our Democratic members gets to do the same.”