First, Second Couples Sport American Designers: Inaugural Update

The incoming president, vice president and their spouses announced they were all wearing American designers for Inauguration Day. President-elect Joe Biden started his day with Mass, joined by Republican and Democratic lawmakers. QAnon used Biden’s inaugural to galvanize followers.

Biden will be sworn in as the 46th U.S. president at noon on Wednesday.

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Bidens, Harris, Emhoff All Sport U.S. Designers

Biden, his wife, Jill, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff, all favored American fashion designers for their Inauguration Day attire.

As he headed to Mass at the Cathedral of St. Matthew in Washington, Biden wore a navy suit and navy overcoat by designer Ralph Lauren. Emhoff also chose that designer. Incoming first lady Jill Biden wore an ocean blue wool tweed coat and dress by emerging American designer Alexandra O’Neil of Markarian, according to a transition announcement.

Harris wore pieces by Black fashion designers Christopher John Rogers and Sergio Hudson, two favorites of former first lady Michelle Obama.

Melania Trump wore Ralph Lauren for her husband’s 2017 inaugural, but later abandoned the tradition of wearing mostly U.S. designers, particularly young and less well-known designers, as many of her predecessors did. That was partly because many U.S. designers refused to dress her. — Ryan Teague Beckwith

Biden Starts His Inauguration Day in Church (9:16 a.m.)

The president-elect began his Inauguration Day with Mass at the Cathedral of St. Matthew in downtown Washington Wednesday morning.

The Bidens left Blair House, the presidential guest house, 15 minutes late, apparently waiting for outgoing President Donald Trump to finish his farewell remarks.

Past presidents-elect have typically walked from Blair House to St. John’s Episcopal Church nearby.

Biden, who will be the second Catholic president, instead chose to take a motorcade to St. Matthew’s, where President John F. Kennedy’s funeral was held.

He was joined by the top lawmakers in Congress, including Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, Democratic leader Chuck Schumer, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. — Jennifer Epstein

QAnon Uses Inaugural to Galvanize Followers (8:47 a.m.)

Far from being disheartened, QAnon and other far-right groups that support Trump used today’s inauguration to galvanize followers for the years ahead.

Online channels across Telegram, MeWe and other platforms where such groups have congregated were filled with calls to “prepare for a storm” at a non-specific point before Biden was sworn in.

Many latched onto a phrase “the best is yet to come” from the outgoing president’s video yesterday as a sign that he was not really going to leave office, or had some broader plan for his followers after departing.

Some however, took a more measured view of Trump’s video and his future plans.

“He’s talking about Trump TV,” said one user on the pro-Trump forum “That’s just how he talks,” another user wrote. — Daniel Zuidijk

Cleaning Crews Scrub White House Ahead of Biden Takeover (7:58 a.m.)

Cleaners were at work in the White House just hours before the Trump family moves out and the Bidens move in.

The new administration takes over amid the raging coronavirus pandemic and plans to institute tight measures in an effort to stem the spread.

The White House has famously tight work spaces, and the new administration had vowed to disinfect them after several outbreaks among Trump’s staff. White House cleaning crews are scrubbing offices, including the press secretary’s office to prep for the arrival of Jen Psaki.

Trump was seemingly up early on inauguration day, with the lights ablaze in the residence at 5:30 a.m. The Oval Office was quiet, however. — Jennifer Jacobs

Trump Supporters Gather for Final Send-Off (7:14 a.m.)

Die-hard Trump backers lined up in the predawn hours outside Joint Base Andrews ahead of Trump’s final rally.

Trump is skipping Biden’s inauguration and its corresponding traditions, instead flying to his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida. Before his last flight on Air Force One, he will address gathered supporters shortly after leaving the White House around 8 a.m. New York time.

A small stage has been built beside the plane, backed by a row of American flags, much like at a political rally.

Traditionally, outgoing presidents stand beside their successors during the swearing-in and welcome their families into the White House on inauguration day. After weeks of refusing to acknowledge his defeat, Trump has declined to participate in any of those symbols of a peaceful transfer of power. — Jordan Fabian

— With assistance by Ryan Teague Beckwith, Jordan Fabian, Jennifer Jacobs, Daniel Zuidijk, and Jennifer Epstein

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