U.S. President Donald Trump listens as Vice President Mike Pence speaks during a news conference at the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House February 29, 2020 in Washington, DC.
Alex Wong | Getty Images
WASHINGTON – Vice President Mike Pence will attend the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, a person familiar told NBC News.
Pence’s decision to watch Biden’s swearing-in ceremony at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 20. is yet another public break with President Donald Trump since the riots that rocked Washington. On Friday, Trump said he would skip Biden’s inauguration, a move that seemed to undercut the president’s message of national “healing and reconciliation,” a day prior.
Biden, who spoke from Wilmington, Delaware on Friday, welcomed Trump’s decision, calling it “one of the few things we have ever agreed on.”
On the suggestion of Pence’s potential attendance, Biden said he’d be “honored to have him there and to move forward in the transition.”
“I think it’s important that as much as we can stick to what have been the historic precedents and circumstances of how an administration changes,” Biden said.
U.S. President-elect Joe Biden attends a briefing to deliver remarks on the U.S. response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, at his transition headquarters in Wilmington, Delaware, December 29, 2020.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters
Traditionally, the incoming and outgoing presidents ride from the White House to the U.S. Capitol together for the inauguration ceremony.
Trump is not the first outgoing president to skip the inauguration of his successor. The others were Presidents John Adams, John Quincy Adams and Andrew Johnson, according to the White House Historical Association. Like Trump, Johnson was also impeached.
Ahead of the inauguration, which is in less than two weeks, more than 6,200 National Guard personnel will deploy to the nation’s capital and remain in the region for at least 30 days.
The mobilization ensures that the National Guard members will be on hand for Biden’s inauguration at the Capitol.