Ron Klain says there are times on January 6 when he wondered whether Biden would ever be inaugurated
- Ron Klain said there were moments on January 6 when he wondered if Biden would be sworn in.
- The violent Capitol riot delayed lawmakers for hours as they tried to formally certify Biden’s win.
- For these reasons, Klain called Biden’s inauguration the best day of the administration thus far.
White House chief of staff Ron Klain admitted that there were moments on January 6 when he wondered if Joe Biden would ever become president as a mob stormed the Capitol.
“There were times on January 6 where I really wondered if the electoral votes would ever get counted and if Joe Biden would ever get sworn in as president,” Klain told Politico’s Ryan Lizza in an interview published on Friday. “So to be here at 12 noon on Jan. 20 to welcome the president here in the Oval Office when he got back from the inauguration ceremonies — to me, that was … the biggest victory we could ever win.”
Klain’s thoughts underline how serious the January 6, 2021, insurrection was and what it meant when a riot delayed lawmakers from formally certifying Biden’s 2020 election win. Then-Vice President Mike Pence and then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell were adamant that Congress would resume the certification of the Electoral College results after rioters were cleared from the building. Lawmakers finished their job in the early hours of January 7.
For these reasons, Klain called Biden’s inauguration the best day of the administration thus far. He called the worst day, August 20, 2021, when 13 soldiers and 170 Afghans were killed during an attack at the Kabul airport as the US tried to quickly withdraw from the war.
Biden and the White House have offered only sparing comments on the House January 6 committee, which is expected to resume hearings later this fall before the presumed publication of a full report on what led up to and unfolded during the White House.
During the interview, Klain touted the president’s recent series of political victories in what he called a “season of substance.” Klain and Democrats are hopeful now that November might not be as devastating as initially thought, a historical trend that has long humbled presidents’ parties in their first midterm.
“We now have a presidency where the president has delivered the largest economic recovery plan since Roosevelt, the largest infrastructure plan since Eisenhower, the most judges confirmed since Kennedy, the second largest health care bill since Johnson, and the largest climate change bill in history,” Klain said ticking through Biden’s first-term achievements. “The first time we’ve done gun control since President Clinton was here, the first time ever an African American woman has been put on the U.S. Supreme Court.”
Klain added that this is “a record to take to the American people.”