Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi concluded a grueling and at times frightening joint session of Congress with a nudge in the hours leading up to dawn on Thursday.
The friendly gesture, apparently initiated by Pelosi, came after President-elect Joe Biden’s constituency victory, certified by the House and Senate, ended a long and difficult day. Pence chairs the Senate.
The two also had a brief conversation after certification and they seemed to thank each other.
Certification, which is a formality in most election years, was set to be delayed by objections from some Republican lawmakers to the results in a handful of battlefield states.
THE OFFICE OF NANCY PELOSI SHAPED DURING CAPITOL CHAOS, THE SENATE CHAMBER ALSO VIOLATED
However, after the process began by Congress on Wednesday, a group of Trump supporters entered the Capitol building, forcing some to shelter in place and others to be evacuated.
HOUSE, SENATE RETURN TO CAPITOL TO COMPLETE THE CERTIFICATION OF THE ELECTORAL VOTE AT THE COLLEGE
When the Capitol Police finally eliminated the rioters, Congress returned to session to continue the certification process. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other lawmakers have vowed they would not be “intimidated” by the rioters.
After objections to the results in Arizona and Pennsylvania were debated and defeated, Congress certified Biden’s victory at around 3:40 a.m. ET on Thursday.
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Pelosi and Pence didn’t always agree and the small gesture was a leap from a tense exchange between the Democrat and some Republicans, including last year’s State of the Union speech when ‘she tore up her copy of President Trump’s remarks after his speech.