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Republican inaugural ceremonies chairman: I hope the president attends

Sen. Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntGOP attorneys general group in turmoil after Jan. 6 Trump rally Senate GOP keeps symbolic earmark ban St. Louis lawyer who pointed gun at Black Lives Matter protesters considering Senate run MORE (R-Mo.), who serves as the inaugural ceremonies chairman, said Sunday that he hopes President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump: LeBron James's 'racist rants' are divisive, nasty North Carolina man accused of fraudulently obtaining .5M in PPP loans Biden announces picks to lead oceans, lands agencies MORE attends the event.

Blunt, who heads the bicameral panel tasked with planning the inauguration, told CNN’s “State of the Union” that he hopes Trump attends the ceremony if President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden announces picks to lead oceans, lands agencies Overnight Defense: Top general concerned about Afghan forces after US troops leave | Pentagon chief: Climate crisis 'existential' threat to US national security | Army conducts review after 4 Black soldiers harassed at Virginia IHOP Feds expect to charge scores more in connection to Capitol riot MORE is sworn in, which the senator said is “likely.”  

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“I hope the president is there on inaugural day, and [we’re] continuing to work to see what we can do to have the president there and have Vice President Biden there likely sworn in on that day,” Blunt said.

The Missouri Republican told CNN’s Dana BashDana BashHarris says Chauvin verdict won't heal 'pain that existed for generations' The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Tensions rise as U.S. waits for Derek Chauvin verdict Bass 'hopeful' on passing police reform: 'Republicans that I am working with are operating in good faith' MORE that he has not attempted to push the president to attend. Instead he said he has urged Trump’s staff to “look at the transition now, look at the opportunity in Georgia to help us win these Senate seats, look at what the president can do if the president is leaving the White House.”

“I think there’s a big role for President Trump, and I hope he embraces that and looks at how you move to whatever comes next for him, assuming that this election works out the way it appears it will,” he said. 

Blunt did not specifically recognize Biden as the president-elect but acknowledged that Senate Republicans are “certainly moving forward as if that’s what’s going to happen on” Inauguration Day. 

"The president-elect technically has to be elected president by the electors. That happens in the middle of December,” he said. 

“But we’re working with the Biden administration, the likely administration, on both the transition and the inauguration as if we’re moving forward,” he added. 

Bash pushed Blunt, citing that he said “likely administration” and asking, “Is it safe to say you do consider Joe Biden the president-elect?”

“Well, the president-elect will be the president-elect when the electors vote for him,” he responded.