Trump himself will not attend Biden’s swearing-in and subsequent gathering of all living presidents.
The United States should swear an oath to Democrat Joe Biden as the 46th president, who inherits a country gripped by deep political divisions and battered by a coronavirus pandemic.
The groundbreaking event, which is set to begin on Wednesday after 10:30 a.m. local time (3:30 p.m. GMT), will be staged amid unprecedented security following the January 6 storming of the Capitol by supporters of incumbent President Donald Trump.
Crowd sizes will be severely limited as the capital Washington, DC has been stranded due to security fears over the deadly riot on Capitol Hill – the seat of US government.
Trump was impeached for his role in the Capitol chaos, becoming the first president in U.S. history to be impeached twice. Critics say repeated false claims by the outgoing president that the November election was stolen sparked violence on Capitol Hill.
Breaking with tradition, Trump himself will not attend Biden’s swearing-in and subsequent gathering of all living presidents.
Here are some of the latest updates:
Trump forgives ex-aide Bannon, dozens more: White House
US President Donald Trump has granted a pardon to his disgraced former aide Steve Bannon in a wave of pardons and commutations during his final hours in office.
The White House statement on Wednesday included a list of the names of 73 people pardoned and 70 others whose sentences have been commuted.
Read more here.
Biden marks nation’s COVID heartbreak ahead of inaugural pump
Hours after the inauguration, President-elect Joe Biden paused what could have been his triumphant entry into Washington on Tuesday night to instead mark the national tragedy of the coronavirus pandemic with a moment of collective grief lost for Americans.
“To heal, we must remember,” the new president told the nation in a sunset ceremony at the Lincoln Memorial.
Four hundred lights representing the victims of the pandemic were lit behind him around the monument’s reflecting pool.
“Between sunset and dusk, let’s let the lights shine in the darkness… and remember all of those we’ve lost,” Biden said.
Trump, in farewell speech, says movement is ‘just beginning’
US President Donald Trump released a farewell video, touting what he described as the success of his ‘America First’ platform and telling his supporters that ‘the movement we have started is just beginning’ .
Trump, who will step down on Wednesday but will not attend the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, admitted in the nearly 20-minute video that a new administration would be sworn in this week.
Read more here.
Indian village applauds Kamala Harris ahead of U.S. inauguration
A small, lush Indian village surrounded by rice paddies beams with joy, hours before her descendant, Kamala Harris, takes the oath and becomes Vice President of the United States.
Harris is poised to make history as the first woman, first woman of color and first person of South Asian descent to serve as vice president.
Read more here.