President-elect Joe Biden landed at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland on the eve of his inauguration in Washington DC in a private aircraft as per CNN reports.
On Tuesday, Biden participated in a memorial honoring more than 400,000 Americans who died due to Covid-19, with 400 lights illuminating the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool. Several towns, cities, and communities across the United States joined the tribute with lighting ceremonies of their own at buildings from the Empire State Building, New York to Space Needle, Seattle.
Biden’s wife Dr Jill Biden, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, and her husband Doug Emhoff also joined for the memorial. The Archbishop of Washington Cardinal Wilton Gregory delivered the invocation and gospel singer Yolanda Adams performed “Hallelujah.”
Biden said: “It’s hard sometimes to remember. But that’s how we heal. It’s important to do that as a nation. That’s why we’re here today. Between sundown and dusk, let us shine the lights in the darkness along the sacred pool of reflection and remember all whom we lost.”
Harris tweeted: “Though we may be physically separated, we, the American people are united in spirit.”
CNN reported that Biden flew on Tuesday (local time) on a private aircraft, yet another change in the protocol on the eve of his inauguration. A source confirmed to CNN that Biden was not flying in a US government plane to Joint Base Andrews for the first stop of his inauguration festivities. Another familiar source stated that the government didn’t offer Biden a plane, but didn’t have any further details.
However, a White House official stated that the Biden team did not ask for a government plane to bring Biden to DC. The official further said that the Biden team was informed about the available options but Biden’s aid preferred to fly on private aircraft.
As per the CNN report, previously Biden had hoped to arrive in Washington DC with a nostalgic twist by riding a train from his in Delaware but it was considered too much of a security risk at a time when the country is facing threats from within.
On Wednesday, Biden and Harris will take oath at the West Front of the US capitol during the 59th Presidential Inauguration ceremony. The event will feature a first-ever live stream for “young Americans.” After that Biden and Harris will take oath followed by the inaugural address by the newly elected President of the United States. Biden will lay out his administration’s vision for the next four years. Next will be America’s long-standing tradition of the ‘Pass in Reviews,’ where the military will reflect the peaceful transfer of power to a new Commander-in-chief. Then, Biden will receive a presidential escort to the White House and the official ceremony will conclude with a “Parade Across America,” that features communities from across the nation and their performances.