WASHINGTON (Reuters) – After taking the oath of office and a brief dash to shake some hands, Joe Biden made it safely to the White House in a barricaded city guarded by more than 25,000 troops and devoid of the hundreds of thousands of spectators who normally throng to the quadrennial ritual.
The unprecedented precautions ensured the new U.S. president and Vice President Kamala Harris took office free of incident in a ceremony outside the U.S. Capitol, two weeks to the day after a mob attacked the building in a failed attempt to keep Congress from certifying their victory.
After being driven from the Capitol in a slow motorcade, Biden briskly walked the last block from the Treasury to the White House, unexpectedly greeting some invited and screened guests and members of the news media along the way in a highly secured area. Harris walked part of the way to her office in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building next door to the White House.
“Just days after a riotous mob thought they could use violence to silence the will of the people, to stop the work of our democracy, to drive us from this sacred ground, it did not happen. It will never happen. Not today, not tomorrow, not ever,” Biden said in his inaugural speech at the Capitol. Reuters News