In historic rite, Biden, Harris sworn-in to lead US

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Kamala Devi Harris takes the oath of office as her husband hold a bible and President-elect Joe Biden stands behind them, Jan 20, 2021. (Photo: Biden Inaugural/IANS)

Kamala Devi Harris on Wednesday created history by becoming the first woman, first Black and first South Asian to become the Vice President of the US.

Harris was sworn in by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latina woman to sit in the nation’s apex court, shortly before Joe Biden was to be sworn-in as the US President.

Joe Biden was sworn-in as President and Kamala Harris as Vice President in a historic ceremony to take the leadership of a nation ravaged by the Covid-19 pandemic and riven by deep political hostility.

The daughter of Shyamala Gopalan became the first Indian American, the first woman, and the first African American to be sworn in as the Vice President, putting her a heartbeat away from the presidency.

Biden declared after being swearing in, “Democracy has prevailed.”

Before Biden, Harris took the oath of office on two Bibles held by her husband Doug Emhoff, one of them that belonged to Regina Helton, whom she has called her “second mother” and another belonged to Thurgood Marshall, the first African American Supreme Court Justice.

She was sworn-in by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latina to serve on the court.

Next, Biden swore on a hefty family bible that his wife Jill Biden held. Chief Justice John Roberts gave him the oath of office.

At the stroke of noon, they assume the Presidency and Vice Presidency as mandated by the Constitution.

Donald Trump, who boycotted the ceremony, had already left Washington for his new home in Florida.

Two weeks after a mob of Trump supporters had attacked the Capitol, they stood on its west frontage to be sworn-in.

The 25,000 National Guard called in to protect them ceremony outnumbered the guests. Unlike in the past, people were kept away because of the Covid-19 crisis and security considerations.

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