Democrat Joe Biden has been sworn into office today as America’s 46th president. Kamala Harris has taken the oath office as America’s first female vice president and first vice president of color.
There are several Missouri connections to the event. For the second consecutive time, U.S. Senator Roy Blunt, R-Missouri, served as the chairman of the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies. During today’s event, Blunt says the inauguration’s theme is “Our Determined Democracy: Forging a More Perfect Union”.
“That theme for this inauguration was announced by the joint committee before the election with the belief that the United States can only fulfill its promise and set an example for others if we are always working to be better than we have been,” says Blunt.
He says the ceremony is not a moment of division, but instead a moment of unity.
“A new administration begins and brings with it a new beginning. And with that, our great national debate goes forward and a determined democracy will continue to be essential in pursuit of a more perfect union and a better future for all Americans,” says Blunt.
Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas attended the ceremony. So did U.S. Senator Josh Hawley, R-Missouri. Hawley led an effort to challenge Biden’s election victory.
The peaceful transfer of power is a cornerstone of our democracy.
— Mayor Quinton Lucas (@MayorLucasKC) January 20, 2021
The U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own” – named after Missouri’s own General John J. Pershing – played at the inauguration. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports Marine Staff Sgt. Lucia Disano, a St. Louis native, is a clarinetist performing in The Marine Band during today’s festivities.
As for security efforts, Missouri has an undisclosed number of National Guard soldiers helping with security, medical evacuation, and logistics during inauguration events. KMBC-TV reports the Kansas City Police Department has 48 officers working along the inaugural parade route. Some Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers are reportedly also helping in Washington, D.C.
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