:: Tuesday, January 18, 2005 ::
Critics attack "lavish" Bush at time of war
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush is drawing heat over a $40 million (21.5 million pound) splurge on inaugural balls, concerts and candlelight dinners while the country is in a sombre mood because of the Iraq war and Asian tsunami.
As Bush prepares for his second-term inauguration on Thursday, his supporters plan to celebrate with fireworks and three days of parties, including a "Black Tie and Boots" ball and nine other balls.
Critics say the lavish celebrations are unseemly when U.S. troops face daily violence in Iraq and Americans are being urged to donate money to alleviate the suffering in Asia, where the December 26 tsunami killed 163,000 people.
:: SL 8:14 AM [+] ::