Biden prepares for historic inauguration amid growing pandemic, protests

D.C. security heightens at historic landmarks and government buildings as sources say Biden prepares to restore Paris Climate Accord, reverse travel ban against Muslim countries and enforce masks.
5:38 | 01/17/21

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Transcript for Biden prepares for historic inauguration amid growing pandemic, protests
Well now to the situation in Washington DC where security has reached historic level in the city's famous public spaces and massive government buildings. ABC's Rachel Scott joins us with more good morning Rachel. Even that morning and it will be an inauguration like we have never seen before all of it playing out against the backdrop of a raging pandemic. An increased threats of violence. We just three days ago national Guardsmen flooding in from the nation's capital. We weren't there Reza hundreds touched down a joint BC Andrews by the time president elect Jill Biden takes the oath of office. 25000. Will be on the ground. Our mission here's to protect our people and or property. And so we're gonna do everything to make sure that they're successful. Authorities on high alert are ready arresting one man who tried to get past the checkpoint on Friday with a handgun and 500 rounds of ammunition. But despite the threats the ceremony will still take place outside. There will be no cheering crowds no long lines of supporters. With Washington on lockdown a seven foot fence now wrapping around the entire capitol grounds. I think that. We can knives yields to those who would try and make us afraid. Other of who we are. Supreme Court justice Sonia Sotomayor will swearing call more Harris says the nation's first female vice president. But for the first time in more than 150. Years the Al Dolan president will not attend. President trump is now trying to assemble defense team for an impeachment trial which could start as soon as next week. Saturday Rudy Giuliani telling ABC news he's involved and is preparing a defense based on discredited claims of voter fraud. Giuliani also not ruling out having the president testify. But some campaign spokesman home immediately tweeting this overnight. President trump has not yet made a determination as to which will your or law firm will represent him. And that impeachment trial could be playing out during Biden's first 100 days in office posing a significant sounds for him. As he tries to push through his agenda there are some things that he will be able to do on his own he does plan to issue a slew of executive actions. Including re joined appears climate accord reversing that travel ban on predominantly Muslim countries and making it mandatory to where have. Dan Rachel thank you so much Rachel thank you really appreciate it let's bring in ABC news political analyst Matthew Dowd Matthew good morning I wanna pick up. Right where Rachel left off there. How optimistic are you that Joseph Biden can get much done in the early days of his administration while descended else is also conducting. And impeachment trial. Welcome morning Dan I mean I think today the victim that. The new president president elect Biden can do a lot that he is even on related to the legislature as I've told you before I'm unconvinced that there's going to be an impeachment trial. After January 20 when when the president takes the new president takes office there's a lot of constitutional lectured experts that dispute. Whether or not you can do that for an ex president. But I think that that as Rachel said I think the new president can do a lot of things he can do all the executive orders I think the main thing the country wants him to do is make sure. Midday cove it is dealt with. And that everybody is getting what they need to get in course of that he doesn't need a lot of legislative action for that but I think we ought to set the bar a little higher. For our legislature Washington. That they can do more than one thing at one time so if there is an impeachment trial they can pass legislative package is an important American people. But the new president can do a lot of things that is un related to dealing with whatever is going to be happening in the United States senate. What's that step back for a moment here I'd love to hear your overall thoughts about this point in American history. As we head into this inauguration that you and I have discussed offline you've called it a pivot point. Yeah I don't think I think we underestimate what happens on inauguration day among the American public site thickly and emotionally. There's always a huge shift in there always a shift towards the future and towards what's gonna happen as opposed to looking at the past. We as a country and a combination of things have never been at a moment like this. Not only is a president a former president not going to come the inauguration. Not only are we in the midst of this massive political crisis in the course of the country after our capital was attacked. And add to that the historic nature of com elect Harris the first woman vice president the first Bob woman of color first woman of Asian descent. As vice president in the course of this it's going to be an historic moment and we're gonna turn to that. Also keep in mind we've inaugurated new presidents in the midst of wars we inaugurated a president. In 1812 and and is still wore last time the capitals attack we inaugurated a new prop president elect an 1864 in the midst of this civil war. And so I think we're at a moment like that it's an historic moment for many reasons but it's a moment I think the country will ultimately shift to the future as it always does. When a new president takes office. So helpful to get that historical perspective Matt thank you very much and I want to. Give everybody a quick program note here tune into this week later this morning George Stephanopoulos our chief anchor will go one on one exclusively. With the incoming Biden White House communications director Kate Bedingfield plus George speaks with two members of congress who both voted for. Impeachment for president front that's all coming up on this week and one other programming note why have you you can see the riveting new ABC news documentary 24 hours. On the capital an inside look at the siege. On Hulu I watched it overnight it is indeed riveting.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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