If you didn’t see Joe Biden’s inauguration speech yesterday, then here’s a useful clip-reel of the highlights for you. Speaking for the first time as president, Biden called unity “the path forward” for the US.
“I know speaking of unity can sound to some like a foolish fantasy these days,” Biden said. “I know the forces that divide us are deep and they are real. I also know they are not new.”
In a speech that touched on issues ranging from the coronavirus pandemic and climate change to racial injustice, Biden insisted that the solution was for the country to come together.
If you are more of a text person than a video person, you can also read it in full here: ‘America has to be better’: Joe Biden’s inauguration speech – full text
Welcome to our live coverage of US politics on Joe Biden’s first full day in office as the president of the United States. Here’s a catch-up on where we are, and what we might expect from today…
- Joe Biden wasted no time as 46th president, signing an opening flurry of executive orders to address the four “crises” that he says will define his presidency: Covid-19, the resulting economic crisis, climate change, and racial inequity.
- Some orders undo significant actions from Trump administration, including rejoining the Paris climate agreement and ending efforts to exclude undocumented immigrants from census.
- Biden also revoked the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline and instructed all executive agencies to review executive actions that were “damaging to the environment” or “unsupported by the best available science.”
- Kamala Harris was sworn in as the US’s first female, Black and south Asian vice-president. She tweeted “Ready to serve” after taking office.
- She was escorted at Wednesday’s inauguration ceremony by Eugene Goodman, the Capitol police officer hailed as a hero for single-handedly leading the mob that broke into the Capitol two weeks ago away from the Senate chamber.
- Amanda Gorman, the youngest inaugural poet in US history, wowed the crowd by reciting a poem at the inauguration that she had written, in part, on the day of the US Capitol riots.
- “We will press forward with speed and urgency, for we have much to do in this winter of peril and possibility,” Biden said in his inauguration speech. Yesterday a further 178,255 Covid cases were recorded in the US, and there were 4,229 more deaths. That’s the second highest daily death toll since the pandemic began.
- Later today Dr Anthony Fauci is expected to speak to the World Health Organization’s executive board meeting. President Biden has promised to reverse Trump’s plan to exit the body.
- In the morning president Biden and vice president Harris, along with their spouses, will watch the virtual presidential inaugural prayer service at the national cathedral.
- In the afternoon the president and vice president will receive the daily briefing in the oval office and then will deliver remarks on the administration’s Covid-19 response. Biden is expected to sign more executive orders, and they will also receive a briefing from members of their Covid-19 team.