Here We Go Again…

Image of the United States Capitol on January 6th, 2021. Image Courtesy of Reuters.

With the start to 2021, the political world in Washington D.C. has spent a lot of time in a state of uncertainty. In the waning days of the Presidency of Donald Trump came a blow to the United States and every citizen in this country. A group of supporters of then president surged through barricades and were able to break into the United States Capitol. This followed a rally which was held outside the White House by the Trump Administration in which protestors first gathered. This in turn follows the argument by some Republicans objecting to the results of the 2020 Presidential Election which occurred on November 3 last year.

Reaction to this event was seen dramatically by both sides of the political spectrum. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky expressed after the events had occurred, “The United States and the Senate will not be intimidated. We are back at our posts. We will discharge our duty under the Constitution for our nation.”

A joint statement was released from Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi of California and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York, stating, “We are calling on President Trump to demand that all protestors leave the U.S. Capitol and Capitol grounds immediately.”

Here at Eaglecrest, reaction to this event has been mostly negative.

“What happened at the Capitol this month was absolutely disgusting and should have never happened,” stated a sophomore.

In response to this event, such scenarios discussed in response to these events were to remove Donald Trump from power, by possible means of the 14th Amendment, 25th Amendment, Resignation, or Impeachment. Speaker Nancy Pelosi called on then Vice President Mike Pence to invoke Section 4 of the 25th Amendment along with members of the Cabinet, declaring the president unfit for fulfilling the duties of the office. The Vice President and the Cabinet did not do so. 

The House of Representatives drafted Articles of Impeachment against the President for high crimes and misdemeanors as listed by the United States Constitution. They passed these articles on January 13, making Donald Trump the only President of the United States to have been impeached two times, and the 4th impeachment in United States history behind the first impeachment of the 45th President last year, and the impeachments of Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton.

Nancy Pelosi sent the articles of impeachment to the Senate on Monday, January 25th. The planned date for the impeachment trial to start will be February 8th.

President Joe Biden during his Inaugural Address after being sworn in as 46th President of the United States, with members of the new administration and family members behind him. Image Courtesy of CNET.

Two weeks after the events that had taken place at the United States Capitol came the Inauguration of the 46th President of the United States Joe Biden and 49th Vice President of the United States Kamala Harris. For the Inauguration, 25,000 National Guard troops were authorized to protect Washington D.C. during the days before, after, and the day of the event from expectations of protests as well as other protests being planned outside the state capitols of all 50 states, including here in Colorado. The Colorado State Capitol has had tightened security for the day as well as other buildings within the city of Denver. 

Bipartisanship was also expressed for the Inauguration of these two offices, with both Republicans and Democrats expressing cooperation both in Congress and the new administration. Speaker Nancy Pelosi stating on January 20th, “Today’s inauguration delivers a much-needed breath of fresh air to the American people. Tune in as we mark the start of the Biden Administration.”

“Congratulations to President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris. Now we must get to work to solve the challenges facing our country. We are all Americans, and together we will succeed, as we have for more than 230 years,” stated the House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California on the same day. 

The reaction locally was held with multiple different opinions, the majority of which supported Biden.

“The inauguration was a breath of fresh air for this country and to keep it intact,” stated one Eaglecrest senior. 

According to tradition, former Presidents had attended the event, including Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama and their wives as former First Ladies respectively. Jimmy Carter, the 39th President of the United States as well as former First Lady Rosalynn Carter stated they would not be attending the inauguration, with no reason given. This marked the first time that the former president had missed an inauguration since his own on January 20th, 1977. 

Former President Donald Trump did not attend the inauguration either, and he had left Washington D.C. during the morning of the inauguration, releasing a farewell address the day before. In a speech given just before he boarded Air Force One for the final time as President of the United States, Trump stated, “I wish the new administration, great luck and great success. I think they’ll have great success. They have the foundation to do something really spectacular.” He was in Florida at the time Joe Biden was inaugurated, making it the first time a leaving president has not attended the incoming administration’s inauguration since Andrew Johnson. 

Now former Vice President Mike Pence and wife Karen Pence did indeed attend the inauguration, sitting beside Kamala Harris and husband Doug Emhoff. 

It has been not only a tumultuous ride for Washington D.C., but all of the United States and here in Colorado for each and every person residing here. What is expected now is a multitude of changes and modifications that will be made as the President of the United States Joe Biden enters his first 100 days in office.