Joe Biden inaugurated as 46th president of the United States


Olivia Fortner

Viewers across the country watch the live stream of President Joe Biden being inaugurated.

Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. has been inaugurated as the 46th president of the United States. He took the oath at the United States Capitol at noon today. Biden was officially declared the winner of the 2020 presidential election on Nov. 7, three days after election day.

Missouri senator Amy Klobuchar started off the inauguration by introducing Biden and new Vice President Kamala Harris. Klobuchar then gave a speech, saying, “We celebrate a new president, Joe Biden, who vows to restore the soul of America and cross the river of our divides to bring us to a higher plain, and we celebrate our first African American, first Asian American and first woman Vice President, Kamala Harris, who stands on the shoulders of so many on this platform and throughout this country who have forged the way to this day. When she takes the oath of office little girls and boys across the world will know that anything and everything is possible and in the end, that is America, our democracy, a country of so much good. And today, on these capitol steps and before this field of flags, we rededicate ourselves to its cause.”

Kamala Harris was also sworn in to be the Vice President. Harris was elected the attorney general for California in 2010, where she served until she was elected to the senate in 2017. She becomes the first woman to serve as Vice President and the first biracial (Asian and Jamaican) Vice President as well.

During his first address to the nation after becoming president, Biden said, “This is a great nation. We are good people. And over the centuries, through storm and strife, in peace and in war, we’ve come so far. But we still have far to go. We’ll press forward with speed and urgency, for we have much to do in this winter of peril and significant possibilities, much to repair, much to restore, much to heal, much to build, and much to gain.”

He would later go on to say, “Folks, this is a time of testing. We face an attack on our democracy and on truth, a raging virus, growing inequity, the sting of systemic racism, a climate in crisis, America’s role in the world. Any one of these will be enough to challenge us in profound ways. But the fact is, we face them all at once, presenting this nation with one of the gravest responsibilities we’ve had. Now we’re going to be tested. Are we going to step up? All of us? It’s time for boldness, for there is so much to do. And this is certain, I promise you, we will be judged, you and I, by how we resolve these cascading crises of our era.”

Biden’s political career started in 1970, when he won the fourth District Seat on the New Castle City Council. He then won a senate seat in 1972, a race in which he trailed his republican counterpart, Calb Boggs, by as much as 30%. Biden ran for the presidency for the first time in 1988. He was a chairman for the Senate Judiciary Committee from 1987 to 1995, and also for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee from 2001-2003 and 2007-2009. Many students remember him for serving as vice president under Barack Obama from 2009-2017.

National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman read a poem during the inauguration, saying, “The new dawn blooms as we free it. For there is always light if only we’re brave enough to see it, if only we’re brave enough to be it…We will raise this wounded world into a wondrous one…We are far from polished, far from pristine. But that doesn’t mean we are striving to form a union that is perfect. We are striving to forge our union with purpose, to compose a country committed to all cultures, colors, characters and conditions of man. And so we lift our gazes not to what stands between us, but what stands before us. We close the divide because we know to put our future first. we will raise this wounded world into a wondrous one…We will rise from the gold-limbed hills of the west, we will rise from the windswept northeast where our forefathers first realized revolution. We will rise from the lake-rimmed cities of the midwestern states, we will rise from the sunbaked south. We will rebuild, reconcile and recover and every known nook of our nation and every corner called our country. Our people diverse and beautiful will emerge, battered and beautiful. When day comes we step out of the shade, aflame and unafraid,the new dawn blooms as we free it. For there is always light. If only we’re brave enough to see it. If only we’re brave enough to be it.”

GHC political science professor Scotty Akemon said that, “America’s new day has begun and that I anticipate with excitement the direction we are going to take.”