President-elect Joe Biden says he’s “not afraid” to take the oath of office outside during his inauguration next week.
Biden’s comments come less than a week after the Capitol – where the Jan. 20 inauguration will take place – was attacked by a large mob of supporters of President Trump.
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“I’m not afraid of taking the oath outside,” Biden told reporters in his home state of Delaware after receiving the second of two coronavirus vaccine injections on Monday. “And we’ve been getting briefed.”
But Biden called for those involved in the insurrection at the Capitol to be “held accountable.”
“I think it’s critically important that there be a real serious focus on holding those folks who engaged in sedition and threatened people’s lives, defaced public property, caused great damage, that they be held accountable and I think that’s a view that is held by the vast majority of Democrats and Republicans in the Congress,” Biden emphasized.
Trump supporters, protesting the joint session of Congress to certify Biden’s Electoral College victory over the president, stormed the Capitol. Five people, including a Capitol Hill police officer, died in the rioting. The attack forced the building into lockdown, and the House and Senate were suspended for six hours until the building was cleared of intruders.
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The president, at a rally near the White House that he headlined earlier Wednesday, had encouraged supporters to march to the Capitol and show strength in opposing the certification of an election that he had repeatedly claimed he had won and that had been stolen
In the wake of the insurrection, security concerns over the inauguration have grown amid reports that armed extremists are organizing for more action, with an FBI warning for Washington as well as state capitals in the days leading up to Jan. 20.
The Capitol is now surrounded by 7-foot-high fencing, and the National Guard is increasing the number of troops to 10,000 in the nation’s capital by Saturday.