Gov. Edwards to attend Biden inauguration

Published 2:33 pm Tuesday, January 19, 2021

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Gov. John Bel Edwards is headed to Washington, D.C., and planned to attend the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on Wednesday, Jan. 20, representing the state of Louisiana at the ceremonial transition of power from one administration to the next.

In a statement released Saturday, Edwards said:

“Less than two weeks ago, our United States Capitol was besieged by a riotous mob determined to prevent Congress from performing its constitutional duty to count Electoral College votes certified by the states. Their insurrectionist actions were patently un-American and mark one of the most shameful days in our country’s history.

“But after great darkness comes the light. Congress did count and certify the Electoral College votes, and on Wednesday, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will become our nation’s president and vice president. I congratulate them again on their victory, and I am proud to represent the people of Louisiana at this historic inauguration. This ceremony will mark a chance for a fresh start, new energy and bold leadership to overcome the many significant challenges facing our country.

“The challenges seem insurmountable some days — the pandemic, racial inequalities, a struggling economy, rampant misinformation and deep divisions in our communities, to name a few. And while it will not be easy to unite our country, that should never deter us from always working to do better, to be better.

“I renew my commitment to my fellow Louisianans and my fellow Americans to continue working with the White House and the new president and vice president to improve our state and our nation. Louisiana has struggled much over the past year, but our people are kind, strong and resilient, and there is no task too big for us to tackle if we put aside our differences and work together.

“I look forward to working with President-elect Biden, and I especially congratulate Kamala Harris, who as Vice President-elect, is the living embodiment of the dreams and aspirations of countless Americans, particularly women and people of color, who have long fought for equality and a seat at the table.

“I am grateful for the close working relationship I have had with the Trump administration, especially throughout the multiple natural disasters our state has faced. Hurricane recovery, in addition to the COVID-19 response, is ongoing, and I have already begun working with President-elect Biden’s administration to ensure that these important issues remain a priority.

“I am also grateful to all of the people working to keep the inauguration safe, from law enforcement to members of the National Guard, and especially the 174 members of Louisiana’s National Guard who volunteered to protect our nation’s capital to ensure the peaceful transfer of power. They are our nation’s unsung heroes and real patriots.

“In Louisiana, we have been in touch with federal, state and local officials about warnings of planned protests in Louisiana and, while so far no violence or lawlessness has occurred at protests in Louisiana, we are prepared and will respond as necessary.”