How 2021’s Presidential Inauguration Will be Different

How 2021’s Presidential Inauguration Will be Different

On Wednesday 20th January 2021, a new chapter will begin in American history when President-elect Joe Biden will be sworn in as the 46th President of the United States.

While inauguration ceremonies are traditional, this year’s formal procedure is not going to be quite the same. Here are 4 ways that the Presidential Inauguration 2021 will be different.

Via Unsplash / Arron Burden


Prior to Covid-19, people could go to concerts, clubs and out for dinner and have drinks with family and friends. Amid an ongoing pandemic that’s affected every country in the world, all these things are on hold and life as we know it hasn’t been the same for months to keep us safe.

Biden’s Inauguration ceremony will be different due to the pandemic; there won’t be crowds of people packed on to the Mall, watching him sworn in. There will be a socially distanced area for a few selected people. The receptions and dinners have been cancelled and there won’t be a parade.

This year, watching the Inauguration will mainly be online and/or on TV.

Further security

Earlier this month, there was a mob of looters that stormed the Capitol Building just as Biden’s election victory was being certified. It shocked world leaders and the world.

In response, this inauguration will see an increased and the largest security presence in history to ensure the smooth transition of power.

Trump will not be attending

It is traditional for the outgoing president to attend the inauguration of the new leader. Current President Donald Trump has said he will not attend which breaks tradition. He will only be the fourth president to skip their successor’s ceremony, the last one being Andrew Johnson skipping Ulysses S. Grant inauguration in 1869.

Trump’s decision was welcomed by Biden.

First woman to be sworn in

On a positive and progressive note, Kamala Harris will make history on the January 20th as the first female, woman of colour Vice-President to be sworn in.

Harris will be sworn in before Biden. Biden will be sworn in on the Capitol’s West Front at noon.

As part of the American 2021 inauguration, have a look at our amazing American programmes, on special this month, including our Historic Walk of Washington DC and our special programme, the American Empire. Learn more about American history, with our study guides here.

Written by Kaz Bosali