Mark Zuckerman, president of The Century Foundation and veteran of Capitol Hill and the Executive Branch, released the following statement on the inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris:

“With the inauguration today of the 46th President of the United States, Joseph R. Biden Jr., the country commemorates and upholds a bedrock of our representative democracy: the peaceful transfer of power. This year, more than most, has reminded us that we cannot take such a transfer for granted.

“President-elect Biden’s inauguration is unique for many reasons. It takes place against the backdrop of a National Mall on lockdown, one day after we passed a heartbreaking 400,000 deaths from COVID-19, and just two weeks after an insurrection attempt in our capitol. There have been few incoming presidents in our history who have faced greater challenges; there also have been few incoming presidents who have offered as much hope for a brighter future.

“Today marks a new chapter for America—one in which empathy and compassion return to our White House. Where evidence and the truth once again matter. Where public policy is viewed as a tool to expand opportunity and equality, rather than to sow division and exclusion.

“President-elect Biden, along with the incoming Congress—the most diverse in history—has the opportunity to provide urgent, much needed relief to the American people and advance economic, racial, and gender equity. The Century Foundation is committed to being a relentless partner to meet those goals and improve people’s lives.

“It’s on all of us to ensure that when America looks back on this inauguration, it’s remembered as the dawn of a new day—the start of a more fair, just, and equal America.”

The Century Foundation has released its top policy recommendations for 2021, spanning five key areas of our work: 1) health care, 2) jobs and the economy, 3) women’s economic justice, 4) Pre-K–12 education, and 5) higher education.

To speak with TCF experts about the opportunities to move progressive policy in a Biden-Harris administration, contact Alex Edwards at [email protected].

Header photo: A view of the National Mall ahead of the inaugural ceremony for President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris in Washington, DC. Source: Susan Walsh-Pool/Getty Images