I love how the Twits on twitter go on about how Trump is obsessed with the size of the crowd, yet it was the media doing the comparing.
There are some pretty good reasons why the numbers might have been less:
- The Democrats have been agitating and pushing people to protest, with some organisations actually offering to pay protester's bail if they get arrested - translation: if you're arrested whilst protesting (presumably because you're also being violent) some wealthy people will bail you out. I'm sure many supporters aren't going to try to brave the potential assault;
- The inauguration of Trump may be a milestone for many people, but it's not as historically significant as the inauguration of the first African American president. For African Americans in 2009 it was a momentous day, whereas Trump's inauguration doesn't have the same draw;
- The increased risk of attacks: with Obama fanning the flames of racial tensions in his 2nd term (remember how electing him was going to somehow bring blacks and whites together?) and Black Lives Matter rioting, many people might just be happy to watch at home from the safety of their living rooms; and
- A large percentage of Trump's support base is in "flyover" country. Flying all the way to Washington to witness the inauguration of a new president who is going to be sworn in whether or not you're there is a bit of a luxury.
Let's not forget that, including all of the above, that Washington DC (can attend event with minimal effort and Trump didn't win) is more than 50% black, nearby states include New York (where Trump didn't win) with a black population of about 5 million.
So, for the reasons stated above, I believe that the inauguration was technically held 'behind enemy lines' due to historical tradition. Had Trump held his inauguration in a pro-Trump state, the turnout would have been much higher.
Funny how the media is always happy to try to bully Trump, but then act all shocked when he bites back. I guess they're just used to picking on Republicans, who never fight back.