Preparations for the 59th presidential inauguration ceremony have been underway for which the theme will be “America United”, an issue that was central to Biden-Harris campaign.
Though an event that draws worldwide attention, this year the inauguration ceremony is going to be different from the previous ceremonies in the backdrop of coronavirus pandemic and the recent mob violence at the Capitol Hill.
There will be no throngs of people as is the case every presidential inaugural. Only 1,000 people are expected to attend the ceremony who are mostly going to be members of Congress and their guests.
The outgoing President Donald Trump will not be attending the inaugural and is expected to leave the town early.
The inauguration ceremony schedule
The inaugural ceremonies will begin with the national anthem and invocation around 11:30 a.m. Eastern Time (10:00 pm IST). Vice-president-elect Harris is expected to be sworn in by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor shortly before noon.
President-elect Biden will then be sworn in by chief justice John Roberts at noon Eastern Time on the Capitol’s West Front, as is tradition.
After he takes oath as the President of US, Biden will deliver his inaugural address.
The President will then move to the Capitol’s East Front for what’s known as ‘Pass in Review’, a longstanding tradition in which a new president assesses the military troops.
After that, Biden, Harris and former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, along with their spouses, will then travel to Arlington National Cemetery to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
Biden will then receive a military escort, with every branch of the military represented, from 15th Street to the White House before an evening of virtual activities.
There would also be a bonus celebration for 90 minutes called “Celebrating America” after the conclusion of the official ceremony and would be hosted by Tom Hanks. Apart from featuring performances of Ant Clemons, Jon Bon Jovi, Demi Lovato, and Justin Timberlake, it would also include remarks from Biden and Harris.
Where to watch the inauguration
All major American broadcasters will air the event live on their TV channels as well as on social media platforms. The event will also be live-streamed on bideninaugural.org/watch/.
(With inputs from agencies)