President Trump Announces He Will Skip Joe Biden’s Inauguration

(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Anders Hagstrom White House Correspondent
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President Donald Trump announced Friday he will skip President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration ceremony Jan. 20.

Trump made the announcement via Twitter after weeks of speculation that he would not attend, breaking tradition. It is highly irregular for an outgoing president to skip the inauguration of an outgoing president, happening only a handful of times in American history. Trump has not officially announced where he will be on Inauguration Day, but reports in December suggested he may hold a rally in Florida.

The last president to skip his successor’s inauguration was Andrew Johnson in 1869, more than 150 years ago. Johnson and the incoming president, Ulysses S. Grant, despised each other and often clashed over how to continue President Abraham’s Lincoln’s legacy after his assassination.

Vice President Mike Pence is reportedly expected to break with Trump and attend Biden’s ceremony, however. Sources close to Pence told Politico that the vice president’s decision became easier after Trump publicly criticized him for refusing to “decertify” Biden’s Electoral College win Wednesday.

Trump’s presidency has been reeling in the wake of Wednesday’s events, when a pro-Trump mob stormed the U.S. Capitol as Congress was certifying Biden’s victory. (RELATED: Trump Says He Was ‘Outraged’ By Supporters Storming Capitol, Is Now Focused On ‘Smooth’ Transition Of Power)

Trump’s administration has also seen a spate of resignations since Wednesday, including former Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, the wife of Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell.

Democrats and many Republicans argue Trump incited the mob to march on the Capitol. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have both urged Pence to remove Trump from office via the 25th Amendment. Pence has given no indication that he plans to do so, and Pelosi has said she may vote on new articles of impeachment.