Politics

Photos mark the transition of power from Donald Trump to Joe Biden

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Key Points
  • The nation on Wednesday witnessed the transfer of power from former GOP President Donald Trump to Democratic President Joe Biden.
  • Inauguration Day comes two weeks after the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by pro-Trump extremists.
  • Trump broke from precedent by refusing to attend Biden's inauguration ceremony.
American flags decorate the "Field of Flags" at the National Mall near the U.S. Capitol early morning ahead of the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Stephanie Keith | Getty Images

The nation on Wednesday witnessed the transfer of power from Republican former President Donald Trump to Democratic President Joe Biden.

Inauguration Day comes just two weeks after the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by pro-Trump extremists. Trump for months refused to accept the results of the 2020 election, citing debunked conspiracy theories of widespread voter fraud.

Biden's oath of office and inaugural address occurred in a locked-down Washington with heavy security, including 25,000 National Guard troops on hand to ensure the peaceful transfer of power.

The ceremony was socially distanced with far fewer attendees than is typical as the coronavirus pandemic rages on. Covid-19 has killed more than 400,000 Americans since the pandemic began early last year.

Biden is now the oldest president in history at 78. Vice President Kamala Harris is America's first female, Black and South Asian American vice president.

Trump broke from precedent by refusing to attend Biden's inauguration ceremony. The former president left the White House and delivered a farewell address Wednesday morning to a small crowd at Joint Base Andrews before boarding Air Force One for the last time and traveling to Florida.

Trump faces a second impeachment trial in the Senate, even though he is now out of office. The Democratic-controlled House impeached Trump on Jan. 13 for inciting the deadly Capitol insurrection.

Fireworks over the White House

Fireworks are seen above the White House after the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Andrew Kelly | Reuters

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden watch the fireworks 

President Joe Biden and First lady Jill Biden watch the fireworks display on the day of the inauguration on January 20, 2021 in Washington, D.C.
Jabin Botsford | The Washington Post | Getty Images

Singer Katy Perry (foreground) performs in front of a firework display during the "Celebrating America" event at the Lincoln Memorial 

Singer Katy Perry (foreground) performs in front of a firework display during the "Celebrating America" event at the Lincoln Memorial after the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States in Washington, DC, January 20, 2021.
Joshua Roberts | AFP | Getty Images

Vice-President Kamala Harris and her husband Doug Emhoff attend the "Celebrating America" event 

Vice-President Kamala Harris and her husband Doug Emhoff attend the "Celebrating America" event at the Lincoln Memorial after the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters

Tom Hanks hosts "Celebrating America" event

Actor Tom Hanks hosts the "Celebrating America" event at the Lincoln Memorial, during the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States in Washington, U.S., in this still image from video, January 20, 2021.
Biden Inaugural Committee | via Reuters

President Joe Biden addresses the nation at the "Celebrating America" event at the Lincoln Memorial

President Joe Biden addresses the nation at the "Celebrating America" event at the Lincoln Memorial after the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters

President Joe Biden signs executive orders in the Oval Office 

President Joe Biden signs executive orders in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, after his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Tom Brenner | Reuters

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden wave from the steps of the White House

U.S. President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden wave as they arrive at the North Portico of the White House in Washington, DC, January 20, 2021.
Alex Brandon | Pool | Reuters

President Joe Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden arrive at the White House

U.S. President Joe Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden arrive at the White House after Biden's inauguration on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC. Biden became the 46th president of the United States earlier today during the ceremony at the U.S. Capitol.
Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images

Members of a marching band 

Members of a marching band walk the abbreviated parade route in front of the White House following the inauguration of U.S. President Joe Biden on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Drew Angerer | Getty Images

Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband Douglas Emhoff walk into the Eisenhower Executive Office Building 

Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband Douglas Emhoff walk into the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House, in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Erin Scott | Reuters

A military band parades along the White House 

A military band parades along the White House in Washington, DC, after US President Joe Biden and US Vice President Kamala Harris were sworn in at the US Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Patrick T. Fallon | AFP | Getty Images

Vice President Kamala Harris waves with her family

Vice President Kamala Harris waves while walking with her family during the 59th presidential inauguration parade in Washington.
Jeenah Moon | Bloomberg | Getty Images

President Joe Biden waves through the window of "The Beast"

U.S. President Joe Biden waves through the window of a car during the Inauguration Day parade, in Washington, January 20, 2021.
Erin Scott | Reuters

The license plate of U.S. President Joe Biden's limousine 

The license plate of U.S. President Joe Biden's limousine in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021.
Rod Lamkey | Bloomberg | Getty Images

President Joe Biden's car rolls on 15th street towards the White House

President Joe Biden's car rolls on 15th street towards the White House during a Presidential Escort to the White House, January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Jose Luis Magana | AFP | Getty Images

President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris attend a wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier after the 59th Presidential Inauguration ceremony at the U.S. Capitol January 20, 2021 in Arlington, Virginia.
Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images

Former Presidents and First Ladies gather at Arlington National Cemetery

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton with his wife, former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, former U.S. President George W. Bush with his wife Laura Bush, and former U.S. president Barack Obama and his wife Michelle Obama wait for U.S. President Joe Biden at the Arlington National Cemetery, in Arlington, Virginia.
Tom Brenner | Reuters

Troops parade during the inauguration of Joe Biden 

Troops parade during the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States, in Washington D.C., U.S. January 20, 2021.
Brandon Bell | Reuters

The 46th President and First Lady

President of the United States Joe Biden salutes as first lady Jill Biden puts her hand on her heart on the east steps of the U.S. Capitol after after the 59th Presidential Inauguration in Washington.
David Tullis | Reuters

The Bidens and Harris attend a Pass in Review ceremony

President Joe Biden, first lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and her husband Doug Emhoff walk down the stairs after the inauguration ceremony, in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
TOM BRENNER | REUTERS

President Biden signs inauguration declaration

U.S. President Joe Biden signs three documents including an Inauguration declaration, cabinet nominations and sub-cabinet nominations, as U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris watches in the Presidents Room at the U.S. Capitol after the 59th Presidential Inauguration in Washington.
Jim Lo Scalzo | Reuters

Vice President Kamala Harris watches as Vice President Mike Pence leave the U.S. Capitol

Vice President Kamala Harris and First Gentleman Douglas Emhoff look on as former U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and former Second Lady Karen Pence leave the U.S. Capitol following the inauguration of U.S. President Joe Biden on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Joe Raedle | Getty Images

President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden leave the swearing-in ceremony 

Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden leave the swearing in ceremony during the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Jim Bourg | Reuters

Presidential embrace

Former US president Barak Obama (R) congratulates US President Joe Biden after he was sworn in, on January 20, 2021, at the US Capitol in Washington.
Olivier Douliery | AFP | Getty Images

Amanda Gorman recites a poem 

Amanda Gorman recites a poem during the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, January 20, 2021.
Kevin Lamarque | Reuters

President Biden embraces his family

President Joe Biden (C-L) hugs his son Hunter Biden (C), daughter Ashley Biden and US First Lady Jill Biden after being sworn in as the 46th US President, on January 20, 2021, at the US Capitol in Washington.
Caroline Brehman | AFP | Getty Images

President Joe Biden addresses the nation

U.S. President Joe Biden delivers his inaugural address on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Rob Carr | Getty Images

Former President Barack Obama fist-bumps Vice President Kamala Harris

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris greets former U.S. President Barack Obama ahead of the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Jonathan Ernst | Getty Images

Garth Brooks performs "Amazing Grace"

Garth Brooks sings Amazing Grace during the 59th Presidential Inauguration at the US Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Patrick Semansky | AFP | Getty Images

President Joe Biden kisses first lady Jill Biden

Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden kiss after he was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Kevin Lemarque | Reuters

Joe Biden's children look on as their father is sworn in as president

Joe Biden (L) is sworn in as the 46th US President by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts (R) on January 20, 2021, at the US Capitol in Washington, DC.
Andrew Harnik | AFP | Getty Images

Joe Biden is sworn in using the Biden family Bible

Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th President of the United States as his wife Jill Biden holds a bible on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Kevin Lemarque | Reuters

Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th U.S. president

U.S. President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th U.S. President, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, January 20, 2021.
Saul Loeb | Pool | Reuters

Jennifer Lopez performs "America the Beautiful"

Jennifer Lopez sings during the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington
Rob Carr | Getty Images

Kamala Harris is sworn in as U.S. vice president

Kamala Harris is sworn in as U.S. Vice President as her spouse Doug Emhoff holds a bible during the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Kevin Lemarque | Reuters

Lady Gaga performs the national anthem

Lady Gaga sings the National Anthem during the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington.
Kevin Lemarque | Reuters

Guests are socially distanced during the ceremony

Social distancing audience during the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Brendan McDermid | Reuters

Sen. Amy Klobuchar opens the inauguration ceremony

Senator Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat from Minnesota, speaks during the 59th presidential inauguration in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021.
Patrick Semansky | Bloomberg | Getty Images

President Trump waves en route to Mar-A-Lago

President Donald Trump waves from a car as he drives past supporters in West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Marco Bello | Reuters

Supporters of President Trump await his arrival in West Palm Beach

Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump stand near the road, as he arrives to West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Marco Bello | Reuters

Outgoing President Trump and First Lady arrive in West Palm Beach

U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrive at Palm Beach International Airport in West Palm Beach, Florida, January 20, 2021.
Carlos Barria | Reuters

Fist bumps in lieu of hugs, due to the Covid pandemic

President-elect Joe Biden bumps fists with former U.S. President Barack Obama during Biden's inauguration as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

America's next first couple

President-elect Joe Biden and Jill Biden arrive at his Biden's inauguration on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Win McNamee | Getty Images

From one vice president to the next

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris talks to U.S. Vice President Mike Pence as they arrive for the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Kevin Lemarque | Reuters

The next second couple

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and husband Doug Emhoff arrive to the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Alex Wong | Getty Images

Eugene Goodman (C), the acting deputy sergeant at arms, escorted Vice President-elect Kamala Harris

Eugene Goodman (C), the acting deputy sergeant at arms, escorted Vice President-elect Kamala Harris at the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Erin Schaff | Getty Images

Supreme Court Justices

Supreme Court Justices arrive for the 59th presidential inauguration in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021.
Patrick Semansky | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The Pences

Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence arrives at the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Rob Carr | Getty Images

The Obamas

Former US President Barack Obama (L) and Former US First Lady Michelle Obama (R) arrives for the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th US President on January 20, 2021, at the US Capitol in Washington, DC.
Patrick Semansky | AFP | Getty Images

The Bushes

Former U.S. President George W. Bush and Laura Bush arrive to the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington
Rob Carr | Getty Images

The Clintons

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton arrives with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Alex Wong | Getty Images

Wave from the steps of the Capitol

(L-R) Doug Emhoff, U.S. Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, Jill Biden and President-elect Joe Biden wave as they arrive on the East Front of the U.S. Capitol for the inauguration on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Joe Raedle | Getty Images

Ascent to the U.S. Capitol

(L-R) Doug Emhoff, U.S. Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, Jill Biden, President-elect Joe Biden, U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) and U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) walk into the U.S. Capitol for the inauguration on January 20, 2021 in Washington
Joe Raedle | Getty Images

Security is tight around the U.S. Capitol

A law enforcement personnel monitoring area during the 59th Presidential Inauguration at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021.
Susan Walsh | AP

A field of flags

Flags decorate the "Field of Flags" at the National Mall near the U.S. Capitol ahead of the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Stephanie Keith | Getty Images

Finishing touches

A man vacuums inside the US Capitol ahead of the inauguration of US President-elect Joe Biden as the 46th president of the United States on the West Front of the US Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington.
Win McNamee | AFP | Getty Images

The stage is set to usher in the 46th president

The sun rises behind the US Capitol as preparations are made prior to the 59th inaugural ceremony for President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on the West Front of the US Capitol in Washington, DC on January 20, 2021.
Caroline Brehman | AFP | Getty Images

Bidens attend services at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle

President-elect Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden attend services at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle with Congressional leaders prior the 59th Presidential Inauguration ceremony on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images

One last flight on Air Force One

President Donald Trump, accompanied by first lady Melania Trump, waves as he boards Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Carlos Barria | Reuters

Final remarks

President Donald Trump speaks to his supporters prior to boarding Air Force One to head to Florida on January 20, 2021 in Joint Base Andrews, Maryland.
Pete Marovich | Getty Images

Final words from the outgoing first lady

First Lady Melania Trump speaks before boarding Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland on January 20, 2021.
Alex Edelman | AFP | Getty Images

Outgoing first couple arrive at Joint Base Andrews

President Donald Trump, left, gestures while arriving with U.S. First Lady Melania Trump to a farewell ceremony at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021.
Stefani Reynolds | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The Trump family

Ivanka Trump (2nd R), husband Jared Kushner (R), their children, Eric (C-R) and Donald Jr. (C-R) and Trump family members stand on the tarmac at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland as they arrive for US President Donald Trump's departure on January 20, 2021.
Alex Edelman | AFP | Getty Images

Marine One flies over the White House as Trump leaves office

U.S. President Donald Trump departs the White House aboard Marine One ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.
Andrew Kelly | Reuters

Trump waves as he boards Marine One

Outgoing US President Donald Trump waves as he boards Marine One at the White House in Washington, DC, on January 20, 2021.
Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images

A military aide carries the nuclear "football" with the equipment and nuclear codes to Marine One

A military aide carries the nuclear "football" with the equipment and nuclear codes to Marine One after US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania borded Marine One before departing from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC on January 20, 2021.
MANDEL NGAN | AFP | Getty Images

Trump and the first lady depart the White House for final time

US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania make their way to board Marine One before departing from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC on January 20, 2021.
Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images