Biden, Harris urge Americans to stay home during Inauguration Day ceremony

Senator Kamala Harris and former Vice President Joe Biden, who will be the Democratic Party candidate for president at the announcement on August 12, 2020, that she will be the vice presidential candidate. (Photo: Biden Campaign/IANS)

New York, Dec 16 (IANS) US President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will be sworn into office on the steps of the United States Capitol on January 20, 2021, just like other American leaders throughout history but almost every other detail of Inauguration Day will be transformed by Covid-19 public health protocols.

In fact, Biden’s inauguration team is urging Americans to stay home and watch history unfold on their television or digital screens. Pointing to the “unprecedented” public health crisis, the inaugural committee plans for an extremely small “footprint” of the in-person event that “honors and resembles sacred American traditions” and also keeps Americans safe.

“The ceremony’s footprint will be extremely limited, and the parade that follows will be reimagined,” the Presidential inaugural committee said in a statement on Tuesday. At this time, it is not clear if outgoing president Donald Trump will participate.

“The 59th Presidential Inauguration will be a historic and exciting event that showcases the strength and diversity of our nation — and one that every American can enjoy from their home,” the Biden inaugural committee said.

Previewing the blueprint for a reimagined event, the team said plans are on to “honor the inaugural traditions Americans have always known”: An outdoor swearing-in ceremony, a “reimagined” parade and “virtual celebrations” feature in the bucket list.

After the swearing-in ceremony, Biden will deliver an inaugural address that “lays out his vision to beat the virus, build back better, and bring the country together.”

Meanwhile, Inaugural Day merchandise – tees, mugs, socks, masks, coasters and blankets – have gone on sale on the official site.

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