Melania Trump has not been in contact with the Bidens since the November election and hasn't given Dr. Jill Biden the traditional tour of the White House.
Many things have happened differently during the US Presidential run this time around and now it's almost time for the new administration to come into power. It has been the custom for the outgoing president and first lady to invite the incoming counterparts into the White House but that won't be happening this time around, as per CNN.
On the morning of January 20, Donald Trump and Melania Trump will leave the White House as President and first lady, but without following the transfer-of-power tradition. They won't be inviting Dr. Jill and Joe Biden into the house on the steps of the North Portico. The outgoing president and first lady also won't ride with the Bidens to the United States Capitol.
Trump is reportedly planning an early morning send-off for himself from a military airfield in Maryland. The event will take place several hours before his successor, Biden, is inaugurated as the 46th US president at the Capitol in Washington DC, according to The Guardian. Trump reportedly wants a huge military parade, an official armed forces farewell as the commander-in-chief, a large gathering of supporters, some current and former officials in his administration, and guests at a red-carpet-like event.
The White House has sent an invitation for an event taking place at Joint Base Andrews at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, hours before Biden will take his oath. "It includes a list of prohibited items such as ammunition, explosives, firearms, laser pointers, and toy guns," said journalist Brie Jackson. The invite also mentions that those who RSVP are "required" to attend the event.
President Trump is leaving office on Wednesday. Plans are underway for a departure ceremony at Joint Base Andrews.— Brie Jackson (@PositivelyBrie) January 18, 2021
This is the invite sent to supporters. It includes a list of prohibited items such as ammunition, explosives, firearms, laser pointers and toy guns. pic.twitter.com/AZNoPUxCWB
The Bidens will be greeted by the White House chief usher Timothy Harleth, according to a source familiar with the schedule of that day, reported CNN. Harleth was hired by Trump in 2017 from the Trump International Hotel in Washington. It is unlikely that he will stay as part of the Biden administration, the source said.
The itinerary of the Inauguration Day also includes then-President Biden visiting Arlington National Cemetery, joined by former Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama, for a ceremonial wreath-laying. The Bidens' things will be moved into the White House and unpacked by then.
So far, Melania Trump has not invited Dr. Jill Biden for a traditional pre-inauguration tour of the White House. The latter was also missing from her farewell address, which is a longstanding ritual of outgoing first ladies. Melania didn't mention Dr. Jill and has not been in contact with her since the November election, according to The Wrap.
Melania spoke about many causes she championed during her tenure as the first lady, including the opioid addiction crisis, online safety, and children in foster care. She also beseeched Americans to "be passionate in everything you do but always remember that violence is never the answer and will never be justified." Further, she told the country to "not lose sight of your integrity and values," and to "use every opportunity to show consideration for another person and build good habits into your daily lives." And yet, she never extended an invite to the Bidens.
From the 1920s to now, the outgoing first lady has always invited her successor to the White House for a tour of its living quarters. It is a gesture of peaceful transfer of power, and like the many other traditions, the Trumps are breaking this one too.