Biden Says He’s ‘Not Afraid’ Of Taking Oath Of Office At U.S. Capitol
President-elect Joe Biden said Monday that he was “not afraid” of taking his oath of office on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol after it was attacked last Wednesday.
“I’m not afraid of taking the oath outside, and we’ve been getting briefed,” Biden said Monday after receiving the second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine on camera for the public.
The riots that broke out at the U.S. Capitol resulted in five deaths, including a Capitol Police officer. With Biden’s inauguration occurring in less than a week, there have been concerns of more violence and rioting taking place over the 2020 presidential election.
“I think it’s critically important that there be a real, serious focus on holding those folks who engaged in sedition and threatened people’s lives, defaces public property, caused great damage, that they be held accountable,” Biden said.
According to chief of the National Guard Bureau Gen Daniel Hokanson, the Pentagon has authorized up to 15,000 National Guard troops for inauguration day. Rep. Jason Crow (D-Colorado) said in a statement on Sunday that the Department of Defense is aware of “further possible threats posed by would-be terrorists in the days up to and including Inauguration Day.”
President Donald Trump stated that he will not be attending Biden’s inauguration, making him the first outgoing president to skip his winning opponents swearing-in in more than 150 years. However, Vice President Mike Pence will be in attendance.
Biden’s inaugural committee announced Monday that the theme of the inauguration will be “America United,” in the spirit of a core pillar of the President-elect’s campaign.
One of Biden’s first acts as president will be to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery, along with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and their spouses. Former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, as well as former first ladies Michelle Obama, Laura Bush and Hillary Clinton, will be accompanying them at the Cemetery and will be present at the inauguration.
“This inauguration marks a new chapter for the American people, one of healing, of unifying, of coming together, of an America united,” said Tony Allen, the committee’s chief executive officer.