(USA Today) If Donald Trump’s inaugural address is anything like his predecessors’, there will be a lot of God in it.
A new interactive built by GoogleNews Labs shows that God was the most common theme mentioned by presidents in the 11 most searched inaugural addresses.
Trump has been unconventional in many ways, including the fact that unlike many politicians, he does not habitually end his speeches with “… and God bless the United States of America.” But for the inaugural address, a reference to the almighty is pretty much a baseline requirement, particularly since Trump was elected with strong support from evangelical voters.
The Google interactive is fascinating, if a bit daunting. It includes 11 full addresses (Trump will be added Friday shortly after he speaks), which have been tagged by topics ranging from “courage” and “loyalty” to “liberty” and “wealth.”
It also shows which topics were most mention within each speech. For example, “money” dominated Franklin Roosevelt’s 1933 inaugural address, because, in the heart of the Great Depression, nobody had any. By contrast, the top topic of Ronald Reagan’s 1981 inaugural address was “freedom” — not surprising for a man whose presidency helped force the collapse of the Soviet Union.
And “God” was the top topic of Abraham Lincoln’s 1865 inaugural address, which was laced with references to the raging Civil War in which both sides prayed to God for assistance.
(Paul Singer writes for USA Today)