Joe Biden became the 46th president of the United States. He took the oath of office in front of the Capitol building. The ceremony of taking office was held according to the abbreviated scheme. COVID-19 and recent riots in the center of Washington interfered. There were many times more security guards than guests.
The new U.S. president’s armored limousine is in a tight security ring, followed by several more similar cars, where close family members, his team, and Vice President Kamala Harris are riding. The path to the Capitol through empty streets. Instead of ordinary Americans, Biden is greeted by hundreds of military and police officers.
Congressional leaders greet everyone on the steps of the Capitol. The traditional handshake. Biden is more focused than ever. His wife, Jill, smiles. The spouses walked holding hands, not letting go of each other for a minute. Before being sworn in, Joe even manages to write a Twitter post, a true ode to the first lady’s love.
“I love you, Jill! I am so grateful to have you with me on the journey ahead,” Biden wrote.
The American anthem is sung by Lady Gaga. As usual, in an extravagant outfit: she wore a puffy red skirt, a dark blue jacket with a huge brooch in the shape of a dove, yellow and black ribbons and a red rose in her hair. Then there was Jennifer Lopez singing about America. Then the procedure of taking office of the head of the state.
Biden is the second Catholic after Kennedy on the post of USA president. That is why he takes oath of office with his left hand on the Bible, which his wife Jill holds in front of him. It is a rare edition, belonging to his family for more than a century. U.S. presidents take the oath of office at noon sharp, it is a tribute to tradition. Biden is now officially master of the White House.
“We can see each other not as adversaries, but as neighbors, we can respect each other, we can join forces and stop shouting and inflaming things. Without unity there is no peace – only bitterness and rage, no progress – only debilitating arbitrariness, no nation – only a state of chaos. This is our historic moment, a challenge to the crisis. And we must meet it as the United States of America. If we do that, I can guarantee that we will not lose,” Biden said.
Biden also articulated his main principle: the U.S. must overcome the “dark times” and social division, otherwise the state risks plunging into chaos. The new president’s priorities will include fighting the coronavirus, climate, racial justice, the economy, health care, immigration and restoring America’s position in the world.
“I promise to be president for all Americans. I promise to fight for those who supported me, just as I promise to fight for those who did not support me. America and her interests come first. That’s all I promise to do in office,” Biden said.
Nearly a thousand guests attended the inauguration. Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and outgoing Michael Pence are in the VIP area with Biden. Other former U.S. presidents, both Republican and Democrat, are also there: Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. What catches your eye is that absolutely everyone is wearing masks. Many have it to the tone of the outfit.
Each member of Congress could only invite one guest. Only three thousand journalists were allowed to the ceremony. Seating was kept at a distance. Instead of simple spectators, who usually gather on the National Mall, 200 thousand U.S. flags were set up. We had to abandon the ceremonial parade as well.
Note that Joe Biden’s first day on the job as U.S. president ended, as it should, with a grand fireworks display. To the song “Fireworks” by Katy Perry, thousands of lights decorated the sky over Washington.