COLUMBIA - "Once again, we renew our commitment to determined Democracy, forging a more perfect union."
Those were the words of Missouri Senator Roy Blunt at Wednesday's inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
The Senator served as the Chairman for the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies (JCCIC), a position he held for the inauguration of Donald Trump. The committee is tasked with executing the inauguration of a new presidential term or new administration.
Given the circumstances, this year was different than most.
"We've done it every four years since 1789," Blunt said. "Americans have celebrated this moment during war, during depression, and now during pandemic."
His remarks this inauguration were on the backdrop of a pandemic, economic crisis, social injustice, and the recent siege of the Capitol.
"Our Determined Democracy: Forging a More Perfect Union" was the theme for the ceremony, which was announced in late October.
Blunt highlighted the moment as an opportunity to unify the country.
"But this is not a moment of division, it's a moment of unification," Blunt said. "A new administration begins and brings with it a new beginning."
Prior to Blunt's remarks, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) introduced him, referring to him as a friend.
Festivities included a traditional gift exchange. Blunt, alongside First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, presented the new president a painting of a rainbow.
Blunt has spent the last decade in the United States Senate. He previously held office as Missouri's Secretary of State from 1985 to 1993 and Representative of Missouri's Seventh District from 1997 to 2011.