Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. became the 46th US president on Wednesday, completing the most challenging power transfer in recent American history.
Inaugurated in a fortified Washington under the shadow of the coronovirus epidemic, the 78-year-old Democrat took the oath of office in the US Capitol in front of a bizarre bipartisan crowd. He enters the White House exactly two weeks after the mob instigated by his predecessor, Donald Trump, banished the Capitol, disrupted Biden’s change of administration and left five dead.
Biden swore his left hand on the Family Bible from Chief Justice John Roberts of the Supreme Court. Speaking after becoming president, he declared, “Democracy has prevailed.”
“On this holy land, where a few days ago, violence tried to shake the foundations of the Capitol, we as a nation, under God, inseparably, come together to carry out a peaceful transfer of power , As we have been for more than two centuries., “Said Biden.
On January 20, 2021, Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the US Capitol in Washington.
Kevin Lamarck | Reuters
The oldest US president, Biden, faces swinging crises as he and Vice President Kamala Harris take power. At 56, she became the first woman, the first Black American, and the first South Asian American vice president.
Biden will attempt to streamline the largest vaccination effort in US history involving a virus that has claimed a lifetime of more than 400,000 people. He will aim to foster an economy in which around 18 million people are receiving unemployment benefits and food banks experience unseen demand over decades.
The President said, “In our further work, we are going to need each other. We need to work strongly during this entire winter.”
Biden will seek to implement a broader agenda, navigating a country where millions of people, including members of Congress, fed with dissolution by Trump, questioned the legitimacy of his victory in the November election. In his inauguration speech, the president said that the country should “reject the culture where the facts themselves are manipulated and also manufactured.” Biden called on Americans to “defend the truth and defeat the lie”.
Biden, a Democrat, won the presidency in November in his third attempt. His first attempt came during the 1988 presidential cycle, followed by a primary loss in 2008 to his future boss Barack Obama.
Biden served two terms as Obama’s vice president from 2009 to 2017. He represented Delaware in the Senate after 36 years, a state Biden said would be written on ” [his] heart. “Biden joined the Senate when he was 30 years old.
The president ran as the best man to defeat Trump last year. There were concerns within his party that his record on racial justice and social security netting left him behind to face the country’s challenges. Biden vowed to “restore the soul of America,” and after stumbling quickly made his party’s presidential nomination.
Tragedy and compassion
Campaigning during the epidemic, Biden aimed to show compassion built through tragedy. He frequently opened up about the death of his first wife, Nilia, and young daughter, Naomi, and their adult son, Bu, undergoing brain cancer in 2015, in a 1972 car accident.
Biden enters the office to curb the pain created by the epidemic. He paused during his remarks to recognize the Americans who had died of the virus during the moment of silence, respecting the nation as “a person and a nation that we know we should and should be.” . “
Working with parochialities in the House and Senate, Biden will try to pass the first $ 1.9 trillion coronavirus virus package. Other priorities include health care, immigration and climate change – some of which he will begin addressing by executive orders on his first day in office.
Biden said the country would be judged by “how these cascading crises of our era are resolved” – epidemics, threats to democracy, systemic racism, economic inequality and climate change.
Throughout his campaign, Democrats said he could win Republicans for his own reasons, especially because of his ties to the Senate. The next two years will test his stranglehold in the Trump-centric GOP. Democrats would need 10 Republican votes to pass most legislation in the chamber.
Trump’s attendance at the day’s ceremonies decreased. He became the first chairman since Andrew Johnson in 1869 to not attend the inauguration of his successor.
He left the White House for Florida hours before Biden was sworn in on Thursday morning. After giving brief remarks to supporters, Trump landed in Air Force One, while Biden attended a Catholic mass with Democratic and Republican congressional leaders.
Trump’s second-in-command, Mike Pence, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-QA, and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, attended the inauguration. So did former President Obama, George Bush and Bill Clinton.
McCarthy, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La. And Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas were among lawmakers who voted against Biden’s victory count in Congress after the Capitol attack and then attended his inauguration. .
The opening took place with a small crowd, faces to slow the spread of the virus. The 6 January uprising, during which some rioters broke their way into the Capitol and called “Hang Mike Pence”, tightened security.
The roads around the Capitol were closed on Wednesday. More than 25,000 National Guard members patrolled in Washington in a display of force.
The National Guard removed two people for “inappropriate” comments and force 10 other reasons, amid concerns about inside threats.
This story is developing. Please check back for updates.
Subscribe to CNBC on YouTube.