Vice President Mike Pence has reportedly congratulated Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on her and President-elect Joe Biden’s presidential election victory.
The Associated Press reported that Pence’s call to Harris was the “first known contact between the elected members of the outgoing and incoming administrations.” President Donald Trump has acknowledged his own defeat but is not known to have called Biden.
A person familiar with the Pence-Harris phone call on Thursday said that the outgoing vice president offered assistance to the incoming vice president’s team, and described the nature of the phone call as “good.” The New York Times, citing an official familiar with the matter, reports that the vice president and second lady Karen Pence may also invite Harris and incoming second gentleman Doug Emhoff to their residence before the inauguration, as per custom, but that such plans haven’t been solidified partly due to the tumultuous events of the past week.
Pence officially oversaw the congressional certification process last week, which confirmed the results of the 2020 electoral college vote last month. The Biden-Harris ticket won 306 votes in the Electoral College, and the Trump-Pence ticket won 232 votes.
In the aftermath of the certification riot on Capitol Hill, members of the National Guard have been stationed in Washington, D.C., and will continue to protect the city through inauguration day on January 20. On Thursday, Pence visited guard members at the Capitol to thank them for helping to keep the transfer of power orderly and peaceful.
“Look after your people, and we’re going to deliver to the American people a safe inauguration,” Pence told National Guard members at the Capitol. “We’re going to swear in a new president, a new vice president, and we’re going to move our nation forward, okay? You’re going to make it possible. So, thank you all very much. God bless you.”
— WPRI 12 (@wpri12) January 15, 2021
While Pence plans to attend Biden’s inauguration, Trump will not be in attendance. According to The Associated Press, Trump plans to leave Washington, D.C., the morning of inauguration day and will become one of only four U.S. presidents who didn’t attend their successor’s inauguration.
As The Daily Wire previously reported:
Breaking with a tradition that has been uninterrupted since the inauguration of President Ulysses S. Grant in 1868, President Trump tweeted on Friday that he would not attend the inauguration, writing, “To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th.”
Three presidents have openly refused to attend their successor’s inaugurations: John Adams in 1801, John Quincy Adams in 1829, and Andrew Johnson in 1869.
Andrew Johnson, who served as vice president under Abraham Lincoln, was the first president to be impeached and declined to run for president himself. He was acquitted in his own impeachment trial.
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