Joe Biden is expected to continue the tradition of the incoming president saluting his predecessor at the beginning of his inaugural address, sources close to the former vice president told Newsmax this weekend.
“Assuming that the [COVID-19] vaccine is being distributed successfully and quickly, Joe will thank [President Donald] Trump for his work on ‘Operation Warp Speed’ that made this happen,” said a source close to the president-elect who requested anonymity.
Such gracious remarks will be delivered, the same source insisted, despite Trump’s efforts to challenge the outcome of the election and the strong likelihood he will not attend Biden’s inauguration.
As to why Biden would salute Trump under these circumstances, the same source replied: “Because he’s a classy guy.”
Jimmy Carter began the tradition at his inauguration on Jan. 20, 1977, with a surprise nod to predecessor Gerald Ford, whom he had defeated in a hard-fought election two months before.
“For myself and for our nation,” declared Carter, “I want to thank my predecessor for all he has done to heal our land” after the Watergate scandal that led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon in 1974 and Ford’s succession to the presidency.
Since then, new presidents quadrennially congratulated the outgoing chief executive as they commenced their inaugural address.
In 2017, despite sharp personal differences with Barack Obama, Trump opened his inaugural address by saying: “Every four years, we gather on these steps to carry out the orderly and peaceful transfer of power, and we are grateful to President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama for their gracious aid throughout this transition. They have been magnificent.”
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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