Clintons, George W. Bush to attend Trump inauguration
WASHINGTON: Ex-President Bill Clinton and his wife, ex-presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, as well as former President George W. Bush, will attend the inauguration of Donald Trump as the new US President on January 20.
Bill (1993-2001) and Hillary Clinton will be at the ceremony to be held at the Capitol in Washington, despite the knock-down, drag-out electoral campaign that ended with Trump’s surprise victory over his Democratic rival on November 8, his advisers told the daily The Hill, EFE news reported.
Despite losing the popular vote by some 2.8 million ballots nationwide, Trump got the 270 Electoral College votes needed to win the presidency in a system that gives each state a certain number of votes according to its demographic weight and equivalent to its number of representatives in Congress.
Also at the inauguration will be George W. Bush (2001-2009) and his wife, former First Lady Laura Bush, though they refused to vote for the billionaire in the elections, the office of the Republican ex-President said in a statement.
“They are pleased to be able to witness the peaceful transfer of power — a hallmark of American democracy — and swearing-in of President Trump and Vice President Pence,” the note said.
Both George W. and Laura Bush left the presidential part of the ballot blank in the last elections, another sign of their rejection of the real estate magnate from the moment Trump was picked as the Republican nominee by his party in last July’s primaries.
On election day, Trump thought it “sad” that the ex-President left his ballot blank, but predicted it would make no difference to the results.
Before the presence of the Clintons and the Bush couple was announced, Democrat Jimmy Carter (1977-1981) was the only former US President to say he would attend Trump’s inauguration.
Bush’s father, former President George H. W. Bush (1989-1993), 92, will be the only living ex-President who does not attend Trump’s swearing-in, Bush’s spokesperson revealed last month, giving as the reason his delicate state of health.
Outgoing US President Barack Obama is expected to follow tradition and attend the ceremony in the Capitol before handing over the presidency to Donald Trump.