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NICK EVANS, BYLINE: Columbus City Council will look to those ideas as it starts work on its budget next month. The council president says his top priority is finding a new way to respond when residents call 911, a response that may not immediately involve police. For NPR News, I'm Nick Evans in Columbus.

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Updated at 6:56 p.m. ET

Twin suicide bombings at a Baghdad market killed at least 32 people and injured 110 others on Thursday, according to Iraq's health ministry. Of the injured, 36 are being treated in hospitals.

ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attacks, according to the SITE Intelligence Group.

More than 100 anti-fascist demonstrators in Portland attacked police and vandalized the city's Democratic Party of Oregon building Wednesday afternoon, breaking several windows in the process, according to police.

Police arrested eight people between the ages of 18 and 38, some of whom were armed with knives and long poles, the department said.

Before descending on the offices of the Democratic Party of Oregon, the crowd scuffled with police on bikes who were monitoring the area where the group had told supporters to meet.

A growing number of grocers are adopting a novel approach in the race to get their workers vaccinated against COVID-19: providing pay incentives.

Aldi this week became the latest grocery chain to offer employees compensation for getting vaccinated, saying it would provide workers with two hours of pay for each of the two vaccine doses.

The grocer also promised workers receiving vaccines that they would not lose pay for missed hours from work and that it would help pay for the shots.

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"Cops And Robbers" is an eight-minute animated film on Netflix. In it, a young Black man jogs through a suburban neighborhood. He remembers childhood innocence, and then his thoughts turn to adulthood.

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Just Scream Hotline Allows People To Vent

Jan 21, 2021

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If you ever hear the news and just want to scream, there's a number you can dial the let it all out. We'll let one of the callers explain.

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The devastating fall and winter wave of coronavirus infections that is causing so much misery across the U.S. appears to have finally peaked, according to several researchers who are closely tracking the virus.

While another surge remains possible, especially with new, more infectious variants on the horizon, the number of new daily infections in the current wave appears to have hit a high in the past week or two and has been steadily declining in most states since, the researchers say.

Updated at 3:36 p.m. ET

President Biden signed a series of orders and directives on his second day in office to take charge of stopping the spread of the coronavirussteps that he and his advisers say will start to boost testing, vaccinations, supplies and treatments.

The newly inaugurated Biden administration wasted no time in taking two major steps to dismantle much-criticized Trump-era immigration policies in its first day in office.

The Department of Homeland Security announced that starting Thursday, it would pause deportations for certain noncitizens in the United States for 100 days and would stop new enrollments in the Migrant Protection Protocols policy, also known as the "remain in Mexico" program.

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As a new president is inaugurated, we're hearing from people who were on this program during the past four years to find out what they hope for in the next four years.

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And we close tonight with the words of Amanda Gorman, the youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history. Gorman recited her poem "The Hill We Climb" on the steps of the U.S. Capitol. Here is part of that reading.

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A Connecticut man has been charged with assaulting an officer during the breach of the U.S. Capitol in an incident captured on video and shared widely on social media.

Updated at 5:06 p.m. ET

Democrats officially took control of the Senate as Georgia's two new Democratic senators-elect were sworn in Wednesday afternoon, cementing a 50-50 split, with Vice President Harris serving as the tiebreaking vote in her new role as president of the the Senate.

Harris administered the oath of office to Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff hours after her own swearing-in.

Updated at 8:23 p.m. ET

The Dow, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq all hit new records as markets closed on Wednesday afternoon.

The achievement was notched right in the middle of Inauguration Day celebrations, as the Biden administration played a montage of dancing and singing across America. There just may have been some celebratory shimmies on Wall Street, too.

The Dow rose nearly 1% to 31,188. The tech-heavy NASDAQ closing nearly 2% higher at 13,457, while the broader S&P 500 rose 1.39% to end the day at about 3,852.

Updated 5:45pm Eastern Time

In one of his first acts in the Oval Office, President Joe Biden signed an executive order to have the United States rejoin the Paris climate agreement, the largest international effort to curb global warming.

They gathered long distance via Zoom, garlanded with pearls in homage to Kamala Harris's signature neckwear, and with champagne bottles ready to pop.

Eight Black women, who for the past 25 years have belonged to what they call the Brown Girls Book Club, could not miss the opportunity to join together for this historic moment: the inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, who becomes the first woman, first African American, and first Asian American vice president.

President Joe Biden has picked a slate of nearly two dozen acting officials to temporarily lead agencies as he waits for Congress to confirm his Cabinet.

According to a list of officials issued by the White House on Wednesday, most of the temporary leaders are career civil servants.

Updated at 9:37 p.m. ET

Michael Pack resigned Wednesday as the CEO of the federal agency over the Voice of America and other federally funded international broadcasters after a turbulent seven-month tenure. He leaves the U.S. Agency for Global Media with a Trumpian legacy of ideological strife, lawsuits and scandal, his departure effective just two hours after the swearing-in of President Biden, who requested him to leave.

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Well, I don't need to tell you that in this divided nation, there are widely divergent emotions around today's transition of power. NPR's Tovia Smith has been out speaking to voters in Massachusetts. She joins us now.

Hey, Tovia.

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Today, Joe Biden became the 46th president of the United States in an inauguration ceremony unlike any other in this country's history.

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President Biden is moving quickly on climate change on his first day in office, saying he plans to sign a sweeping executive order to undo many of the Trump administration's environmental rollbacks.

The traditional inaugural parade was not an option this year, given security fears and the coronavirus pandemic.

So instead, the Biden Inaugural Committee is throwing a "Parade Across America" — a virtual celebration involving dancers, drum lines, singers and athletes from across the United States.

Updated at 5:40 p.m. ET

As President Joe Biden took the oath of office on Jan. 20 with his history-making vice president, Kamala Harris, people across the nation seemed cautiously optimistic.

President Biden traveled from the U.S. Capitol across the Potomac River to Arlington National Cemetery after his inauguration ceremony Wednesday afternoon to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

He was joined by Vice President Harris as well as former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, along with their spouses and members of their families.

Biden and Harris each touched the wreath, and Biden made the sign of the cross before saluting. A military bugler then played taps.

Updated Jan. 21 at 3:10 p.m. ET

Following President Biden's executive action signed Wednesday, the Education Department extended pandemic relief for about 41 million federal student loan borrowers through Sept. 30.

"Too many Americans are struggling to pay for basic necessities and to provide for their families," the Education Department said in a statement. "They should not be forced to choose between paying their student loans and putting food on the table."

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