His announcement comes amid growing calls for him to resign or be removed from office, after Democrats and a number of Republicans believe he bears blame for the siege on the Capitol on Wednesday.
“To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th,” Trump tweeted on Friday.
To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 8, 2021
Trump will be the first president not to attend his successor’s inauguration since Andrew Johnson in 1869. Richard Nixon resigned from office and left the White House before Gerald Ford was sworn in in 1974. It may now be left to Vice President Mike Pence to represent the outgoing administration.
It has been a tradition for the incumbent president to invite the president-elect to the White House, and they ride to the inauguration together. Former presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton plan to attend.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi plans a conference with Democratic members on Friday to discuss the possibility of bringing articles of impeachment to the floor, after she earlier said that Pence and the cabinet should consider invoking the 25th Amendment. If the House passed articles, Trump would be the first president to be impeached twice. Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) told CBS News that he would consider voting to convict Trump if articles of impeachment reach the Senate.
Meanwhile, the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal, owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, called on Trump to resign. Others including former Secretary of State Colin Powell and Alyssa Farah, who until Wednesday was Trump’s communications director, said that the president should resign or consider resigning.
Trump released a video Thursday in which he promised an “orderly transition of power,” a contrast to his defiant rhetoric a day earlier, when he told thousands of supporters to march to the Capitol and urged Republicans to “fight.” But Trump’s recent calls for unity don’t appear to have stopped members of the administration from resigning or calls by Democrats for his removal.
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