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It’s official, Joe Biden is the 46th President of the United States

It's official: Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have been sworn in as President and Vice President of the United States. 

For the first time in United States history, a woman now holds executive office in the United States government. Vice President Harris is the first woman, Black person and person of Indian descent to be elected Vice President of the United States. President Biden is also breaking norms, as he is only the second Catholic to ever hold the office and, at 78, is the oldest person to ever be sworn in as president. 

The inaugural festivities looked different this year, with many of the traditional components being shortened or altered to meet local health and safety restrictions. 

Instagram: @ladygaga

After a tumultuous month, including the storming of the United States Capitol and the impeachment of President Donald Trump, many people expressed concern for the feasibility of a traditional inauguration. Although former President Trump opted out of attending the inauguration, former Vice President Mike Pence attended the ceremony, along with Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. 

Washington, D.C. was forced to heighten security for the event to thwart security threats targeting government officials and buildings amid an increasingly hostile political climate in the nation's capital. 15,000 troops were tasked with preventing further insurrection, which led to an eerie sight on the steps of the Capitol this morning. 

The inauguration featured star-studded performances from artists like Jennifer Lopez, Lady Gaga and Garth Brooks. On Tuesday, Lady Gaga took to Instagram to express her wishes for a safe and peaceful transition of power. "I pray tomorrow will be a day of peace for all Americans. A day for love, not hatred. A day for acceptance not fear. A day for dreaming of our future joy as a country. A dream that is non-violent, a dream that provides safety for our souls."

Instagram: @voanews

While no crowd was permitted to attend the event, the inaugural committee worked hard to ensure the experience was viewer-friendly for supporters across the country. In the days leading up to the inauguration, 200,000 flags were placed in the National Mall to honor the Americans who couldn't attend the ceremony in person. 

The theme of the inauguration was "America United," which "reflects the Biden-Harris commitment to healing the nation and bringing Americans together," according to a statement the inaugural committee gave ahead of the proceedings. 

President Biden has emphasized his intentions to unify the country since he was elected in November 2020. "America, I'm honored that you have chosen me to lead our great country," He wrote in a tweet. "I will be a President for all Americans—whether you voted for me or not."

During his inaugural address, he spoke of his hope for the United States to move forward together. He plans to sign over a dozen executive actions, including two that will allow the United States to rejoin the World Health Organization and the Paris Climate Agreement—both of which The United States left in President Trump's administration—during his first day in office. He is hopeful that his administration will restore the nation's faith in the United States as a global power.

"This is America's day. This is democracy's day," President Biden said as he addressed the nation for the first time as President. "We will write the next great chapter in the history of the United States."

Slider image credits: CSPAN

Did you watch the inauguration? Let us know your thoughts by tagging us on social media @girlslifemag.


by Claire Hutto | 1/20/2021