The Latest: Calm at state capitols as Biden is sworn in
WASHINGTON — The Latest on Joe Biden's presidential inauguration (all times local):
Calm prevailed outside heavily fortified state capitol buildings across the U.S. as Joe Biden was sworn in as president.
The FBI had warned of the possibility for armed demonstrations leading up to the inauguration after President Donald Trump repeatedly and falsely claimed the election was stolen from him.
Fewer than a half-dozen demonstrators showed up outside the capitols in Concord, New Hampshire, and Lansing, Michigan. A lone protester wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat stood outside a chain-link fence surrounding the California Capitol in Sacramento, as dozens of police officers and National Guard troops guarded every entrance.
Three protesters were outside the Nebraska Capitol in Lincoln, one waving a flag that read “Biden is not the president.”
Dump trucks, prison buses and other government vehicles were used to barricade streets around the Georgia Capitol in Atlanta, though no protesters were there.
Michigan lawmakers canceled a session scheduled for Wednesday out of caution. But in Wisconsin, legislators planned to move ahead with a committee hearing that was to be open to the public.
HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT JOE BIDEN’S INAUGURATION AS THE 46TH U.S. PRESIDENT:
Joe Biden took the oath of office at noon Wednesday to become the 46th president of the United States. He takes charge in a deeply divided nation, inheriting a confluence of crises arguably greater than any faced by his predecessors.
— On Day One, Biden to undo Trump policies on climate, virus
— Biden’s first act: Orders on pandemic, climate, immigration
— Biden charts new US direction, promises many Trump reversals
— DC on lockdown and on edge before Biden’s inauguration
— Vice President Harris: A new chapter opens in US politics
— Analysis: For Biden, chance to turn crisis into opportunity
— What to Watch: An inauguration unlike any other amid pandemic, unrest
— Trump pardons ex-strategist Steve Bannon, dozens of others
— Trump frees former aides from ethics pledge, lobbying ban
HERE'S WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON:
The official swearing-in ceremony for President Joe Biden have concluded, but more events are planned throughout the day.
Biden and first lady Jill Biden departed the platform at the U.S. Capitol following a ceremony that included Biden taking the oath Wednesday as the 46th president of the United States. Vice President Kamala Harris also took her oath of office, becoming the nation’s first female vice president.
The day included musical performances from Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez and Garth Brooks. Celebrated poet Amanda Gorman read a piece noting that, “while democracy can be permanently delayed, it can never be permanently denied.”
Following his departure from the platform, Biden was expected to sign paperwork in the President’s Room within the U.S. Capitol. Afterward, he reviews troops outside the Capitol before departing and traveling to Arlington National Cemetery for a ceremony with former presidents in attendance.
Later Wednesday, Biden is expected to make his first official arrival at the White House as president before a virtual inaugural parade.
Inaugural poet Amanda Gorman summoned images dire and triumphant as she called out to the world “even as we grieved, we grew.”
Gorman is 22, by far the youngest inaugural poet since Robert Frost read for John F. Kennedy in 1961. She quoted biblical scripture and echoed the oratory of Kennedy and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. among others as she recited her poem at President Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday.
She referred to the Jan. 6 siege of the U.S. Capitol by supporters of President Donald Trump, an event that she said helped inspire her to finish her poem, “The Hill We Climb.”
More than a hundred people stood in the cold waiting to get through a security checkpoint to reach Pennsylvania Avenue, where they hoped to catch a glimpse of the presidential procession.
People watched the inauguration ceremony on their phones Wednesday, cheering as Vice President Kamala Harris, then President Joe Biden took the oath.
“I feel so hopeful, so thankful,” said Karen Jennings Crooms, a D.C. resident waiting in line with her husband. “It makes us sad that this is where we are but hopeful that democracy will win out in the end. That’s what I’m focusing on.”
Her husband, Vernal Crooms, who attended Howard University at the same time as Harris but didn’t know her, said he was happy to see the Donald Trump era end.
He said, “We’ve turned the page. Light prevailed and the lie didn’t last.”