Washington: US President Donald Trump has thanked his defeated Democratic rival Hillary Clinton and former president Bill Clinton for attending his inauguration saying he was “honoured” by their presence, and urged the attendees to give them a standing ovation.
At a Congressional luncheon held in his honour at the US Capitol soon after his inauguration, Trump said he was honoured by their presence.
“I’ll tell you, there is something that I wanted to say because I was very honoured, very, very honoured when I heard that President Bill Clinton and Secretary Hillary Clinton were coming today and I think it’s appropriate to say and I’d like you to stand up,” Trump said.
In fact when Trump entered the room, he went out of his way to walk across the room to shake hands with Hillary, and said to her loudly, “Thank you for being here.”
Clinton was among the more popular guests as people lined up to talk with her and in some cases get photos.
“And honestly, there’s nothing more I can say because I have a lot of respect for those two people,” Trump said.
“So thank you for being here and we’re going to have four great years hopefully of peace and prosperity and we’ll be working very, very hard,” he added.
The 69-year-old former senator and secretary of state was defeated by Trump in November 8 elections.
Earlier during the luncheon, 70-year-old Trump and First Lady Melania Trump were presented with gifts from the Congress.
For the 8th consecutive Inauguration, Lenox Corporation created the official Inaugural gifts from the American people, given to the new President and Vice President of the US.
Trump and Vice President Michael Pence were presented with custom-made, one-of-a-kind engraved crystal vases.
The Presidential crystal bowl shows an image of the White House on one side overlooking the Jefferson Memorial on the opposite side.
The Vice Presidential crystal bowl depicts the US Capitol building overlooking the Lincoln Memorial on the other side.
Each bowl has a compass rose cut into the base with the points of the compass aligned correctly with the buildings etched into the crystal.
The bowls are made of lead crystal and are 12 inches across, and will be placed on top of black cherry wood bases that bear an inscription of the date and occasion engraved into silver plaques.
Presenting the gift to the First Lady, Senator Roy Blunt said the glass for it came from Slovenia.