Live Blog: Biden to Take Office Amid Unprecedented Challenges

David Corn

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.Good morning and welcome to the inauguration of Joe Biden.
Today’s ceremony, which will look starkly different from previous inaugurations in light of the pandemic, kicks off at 12 p.m. ET. Unprecedented security measures are in place following the murderous attack on the Capitol exactly two weeks ago. Today, 25,000 National Guard troops—roughly five times the number of service members currently stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan—are patrolling the area.
Donald Trump is, of course, snubbing the festivities. Instead, he’ll be spending his final hours in office with a military-style send-off that reportedly failed to attract even Mike Pence. John Kelly, Don McGahn, and Anthony Scaramucci are also among former White House officials to have declined invites.
Follow along below for the latest:
9:20 a.m. ET: Our DC Bureau Chief David Corn is live at the ceremony where guests are starting to arrive.

From beneath the podium where Joe Biden will become president.
— David Corn (@DavidCornDC) January 20, 2021

8:35 a.m. ET: Trump is now speaking at his farewell event at Joint Base Andrews, where he organized a 21-gun salute for himself:

Trump gets his 21 gun salute
— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) January 20, 2021

8:00 a.m. ET: Bye.

BREAKING — It was “the honor of a lifetime,” Trump tells us and mouths “thank you” to the press. He said he just wants to “say goodbye” and “we love the American people.”
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) January 20, 2021

Donald Trump has left the White House
— Tom Namako (@TomNamako) January 20, 2021

8:00 a.m. ET: A small crowd has gathered outside for Trump’s final White House exit.

Minutes away from Trump’s departure from the White House for the final time @MSNBC
— Jesse Rodriguez (@JesseRodriguez) January 20, 2021

7:40 a.m. ET: Before the events of the day overtake us,  let’s take a look at the flurry of executive orders Biden is expected to sign after getting sworn in. Those include immediate orders to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord and the World Health Organization, extending key coronavirus financial relief measures such as eviction and foreclosure moratoriums, and ending the Trump’s administration’s Muslim ban.