President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris announced the formation of an inaugural committee and a new website on Monday, the beginning of a planning process for a celebration that is likely to look very different from years past.
Tony Allen, a former Biden speechwriter and Delaware State University president, will serve as chief executive officer of the inaugural committee, while Maju Varghese, a Biden campaign senior adviser and chief operating officer, will fill the role of executive director.
Erin Wilson, a Biden campaign staffer, and Yvanna Cancela, a Nevada state senator and Biden ally, will serve as deputy executive directors.
The Biden transition team also announced the launch of an inaugural website, BidenInaugural.org, and Twitter handle, @BidenInaugural.
The committee will face a tall task in planning the event due to complications arising from the Covid-19 pandemic: Biden’s incoming chief of staff Ron Klain recently said the inauguration is “not going to be the same.”
Klain predicted the event would operate similarly to the Democratic National Convention, which was virtual and had no live crowds.
“I think we’ll have some mix of those techniques, some mix of, you know, scaled-down versions of the existing traditions,” the incoming chief of staff said.
What To Watch For
How President Trump will act. In years past, former presidents have attended the inauguration ceremony of their successor. For instance, former President Barack Obama and then First Lady Michelle Obama stood next to Trump and First Lady Melania Trump during the ceremony in 2016.
Trump is reportedly considering holding a 2024 campaign event during Biden’s Inauguration, according to the Daily Beast.
On Sunday, Trump made clear he is not planning on conceding to Biden anytime soon. During an interview with Fox News, Trump said his “mind will not change in six months” when it comes to the election.
An inauguration ceremony is not mandated by the Constitution, but the Oath of Office—which is administered by the chief justice of the Supreme Court at the ceremony—is required. Article II, Section One, Clause 8 of the Constitution reads: “Before he enters the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:— ‘I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.’”
Biden chief of staff says inauguration ‘not going to be the same’ (Politico)
Trump: ‘My Mind Will Not Change In Six Months’ About Election Outcome (Forbes)