You wouldn’t be alone if you welled up watching Joe Biden and Kamala Harris take their oaths of office this morning.
Through a perhaps unexpectedly peaceful ceremony, the exchange of power took place with Biden signalling in his speech that the occasion marked a moment of much-needed national renewal.
“This is democracy’s day. A day of history and hope, of renewal and resolve. Through a crucible for the ages, America has been tested anew and America has risen to the challenge,” he said.
Referencing the period of division they were emerging out from, Biden added that now was the time to come together.
“As we look ahead in our uniquely American way, restless, bold, optimistic, and set our sights on a nation we know we can be, and we must be.”
His words rung out as the tonic sorely needed by Americans but also the rest of the world, which has watched four years of destruction inflicted by the nation’s presidential predecessor, Donald Trump.
However, it was the Democrats’ women that became the most visual reminder that hope and humanity could be restored.
Bold, in a purple pant suit, Kamala Harris farewelled Mike Pence before being escorted to the top of Capitol Hill and giving her oath. Sworn in as the 49th Vice President by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, a grinning and visibly relieved Harris embraced her husband and waved to onlookers.
Former First Ladies Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton similarly wore purple. A colour symbolising not only bipartisanship– the mixing of Republicans’ blue and Democrats’ red– but also the central colour of the Women’s Suffrage Movement; the instinct of freedom and dignity and women’s power.
After a tumultuous period in world history, these women stand for us all.