Following the eventual ratification of the Electoral College vote tally declaring Joe Biden the president-elect, President Donald Trump addressed a burning question regarding his intentions on Inauguration Day.
In a tweet posted a short time before his Twitter account was suspended, the president made it clear that he would not be among those in attendance for the former vice president’s swearing-in ceremony.
“I will not be going”
“To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th,” Trump wrote.
It is unclear whether the violent riot on Wednesday in the nation’s capital had any impact on the president’s decision, but speculation had abounded even before that incident regarding whether Trump would show up for his successor’s inauguration.
By not showing up for the ceremony, Trump will be the first president to take such action after being voted out of office. The last president to skip his successor’s inauguration was Andrew Johnson in 1869.
Before Johnson, Presidents John Quincy Adams and John Adams made the same decisions in 1829 and 1801, respectively. Richard Nixon could arguably be a member of the same small club when he failed to show up for Gerald Ford’s inauguration following his resignation amid the Watergate scandal.
Trump’s tweet on the matter would be one of the final posts he made on the social media network before the decision to permanently ban his account, which prompted a number of other platforms to follow suit.
“Honored to have him there”
While Trump will not be attending, Vice President Mike Pence is expected to be at the ceremony. Alongside him will be the three most recent ex-presidents, Barack Obama, George W. Bush, and Bill Clinton.
Despite the unusual nature of the current president’s decision, his successor appears to be on the same page.
“It’s a good thing, him not showing up,” Biden said during a press conference on Friday. “He exceeded even my worst notions about him. He’s been an embarrassment to the country.”
His stance on Pence’s attendance, however, swas markedly different.
“The vice president is welcome to come,” Biden said, noting that he would “be honored to have him there and to move forward in the transition.”