“To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the inauguration on January 20th,” he announced on Twitter.
Trump’s decision to skip Biden’s swearing-in ceremony comes after weeks of refusing to acknowledge that Biden won the November 3 election.
Trump isn’t the first outgoing president to skip his successor’s inauguration. John Adams, John Quincy Adams and Andrew Johnson did not attend their successors’ inaugurations. Richard Nixon left the White House after resigning and did not attend Gerald Ford’s swearing-in.
After reports surfaced on Thursday that Vice President Mike Pence was expected to attend the inauguration, his spokesman Devin O’Malley tweeted: “You can’t attend something you haven’t received an invitation to.”
But a spokesperson for Biden’s inaugural committee said Pence is “of course invited to attend the Inaugural.” She said the president and vice president traditionally do not receive formal invitations.
Attendance is coordinated at a staff level “and that is taking place,” the spokesperson said.
Pence and his wife “have yet to make a decision regarding their attendance,” O’Malley said on Friday.
Biden’s inauguration will be a scaled-down event because of the health risks posed by the coronavirus pandemic. Tickets to the swearing-in ceremony will be limited.
The traditional parade down Pennsylvania Avenue will be replaced by a virtual parade that will be televised.