WASHINGTON – Former President George W. Bush and his wife, Laura, “look forward to returning to the Capitol for the swearing in” of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on Jan. 20, Bush spokesman Freddy Ford announced late Tuesday.
It will be the eighth presidential inauguration the Bushes have “had the privilege of attending,” Ford said.
The Bushes, who live in Dallas, most recently appeared at President Donald Trump’s inauguration in 2017. The couple, both Republicans, also attended the swearing-in of President Barack Obama in 2009 after they greeting the incoming president and his family at the White House.
“Witnessing the peaceful transfer of power is a hallmark of democracy that never gets old,” Ford wrote on Twitter.
The announcement came on the eve of Congress meeting to count the Electoral College votes that secured the White House for Biden, a Democrat. Several Texas Republicans plan to object to the electoral votes’ certification in key swing states that helped decide the election.
Bush, who’s always had a strained relationship with Trump, was among the first Texas Republicans to acknowledge Biden’s victory.
“Though we have political differences, I know Joe Biden to be a good man, who has won his opportunity to lead and unify our country,” Bush said Nov. 8 after a call with Biden. “The President-elect reiterated that while he ran as a Democrat, he will govern for all Americans.”
Earlier on Tuesday, former President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, announced that they would not be attending Biden’s inauguration, which is going to be significantly scaled down and mostly virtual due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
“President and Mrs. Carter will not travel to Washington for the inauguration but have sent their best wishes to President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris and look forward to a successful administration,” a Carter spokeswoman told CNN.
Jimmy Carter is America’s oldest living president and has had several health scares in recent years.