Swearing In the 115th Congress with Joe Biden and Paul Ryan (photos)

Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker Paul Ryan performed their respective swearing-in reenactments at the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday, Jan. 3, giving senators and congressmen a chance to go before the cameras with family members. Throughout the Senate ceremony in the Old Senate Chamber, the vice president once again took center stage, greeting senators, spouses and kids with hugs, kisses and slightly off-color remarks in his final ceremonial act.

Reflecting the ethnic and religious diversity of the new Congress, a variety of religious books were provided by the Librarian of Congress, including Catholic, Protestant, Eastern Orthodox and Jewish Bibles; a Book of Mormon; a Quran; Buddhist Sutras; and Hindu Vedas. A copy of the U.S. Constitution was also made available to those not wishing to use a religious book. One of the items offered was a rare document from the Library of Congress collection: a copy of a 1789 imprint of the acts of the first session of the first Congress under the new federal constitution, signed by George Washington. As always, members of Congress had the option to provide a personal book; many members brought along family Bibles.

Republicans will hold a 52 to 48 advantage over Democrats in the Senate and a 241 to 194 advantage over Democrats in the House of Representatives in this, the 115th Congress.

*View Jeff Malet’s photos of the swearing-in ceremonial reenactments at the U.S. Capitol by clicking on the icons below.*

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