WASHINGTON (Nexstar) — Lawmakers are taking their official oath of office on Capitol Hill Sunday in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 117th Congress was gaveled in a noon, despite two of the 435 seats of the House unfilled.

The first is in New York District 22 where the race, at last check, had not been called and less than three dozen votes separate the two candidates.

The second is a vacancy left by 41-year-old Congressman Elect Luke Letlow of Louisiana, who passed away last week from COVID-19.

Several lawmakers, including Rep. Barry Moore (R-AL), wore a Louisiana pin in his remembrance. “We are wearing this in his honor, his family’s honor,” said Moore.


U.S. Senator John Hickenlooper issued the following statement today after taking the oath of office to serve Colorado in the U.S. Senate:

“It’s an honor to be sworn in today to represent the great state of Colorado in the United States Senate. I’m grateful for the trust and faith Coloradans have placed in me, and looking forward to bringing your voices to Washington to tackle our country’s most pressing issues. The challenges ahead are grave, but with hard work, common sense, and collaboration we can move forward together and emerge from this pandemic more resilient. We’re excited to get to work and deliver for Coloradans in every corner of the state.”

U.S. Senator John Hickenlooper

Hickenlooper — a former Colorado governor, Denver mayor, small businessman and geologist — has spent the last twenty years bringing people together to find solutions to challenges facing Colorado and is excited to continue that work in Washington. Hickenlooper took the oath of office today alongside his wife Robin and son Teddy. 

Today, U.S. Representative Lauren Boebert (CO-03) released the following statement after being sworn in as a Member of the 117th Congress:

“I am proud to take the oath of office to represent and serve the great people of Colorado’s Third Congressional District. Since the election, my team and I have assembled a powerhouse staff, established offices throughout the District, and positioned my office to hit the ground running on day one. I am going to work extremely hard to get the job done in a way that makes everyone proud in rural Colorado of their new Representative and more importantly, delivers results. Let’s get to work.”

U.S. Representative Lauren Boebert (CO-03)

Congresswoman Lauren Boebert is 34 years old and is from Rifle, Colorado. She is the first woman, first mother, and youngest ever to represent Colorado’s Third District. She is the owner and operator of Shooters Grill, a western-themed restaurant where staff open-carry.

Congressman Lamborn issued the following statement on the first day of the 117th Congress:
“I am humbled to once again represent the constituents of the Fifth Congressional District. I promise to fight for our shared values and stand against the radical ideology of the left. During the 117th Congress, my priorities will focus on rebuilding our economy, protecting the lives of the unborn, ensuring our military has the funding it needs to compete with our adversaries, and protecting religious liberty across the globe. It is my distinct honor and privilege to serve you.”

The new Congress faces a difficult 2021, taking an oath of office in the middle of a pandemic and an economic crisis. Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) said the first priority for the new Congress is helping Americans navigate the pandemic.

“We need a strategy that I believe the Biden administration will lead on and all of us need to pitch in on,” said Doggett.

But dozens of House Republicans are still battling against a Biden administration and promise to object to electoral ballots from swing states when Congress meets to certify the vote on Wednesday.

 “This is about fighting for the Americans voice to be heard when we vote,” added Moore.

Other Republicans are not so sure.

“I respect those who do object and those who don’t,” said Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR). “Everybody has to look at it from their own personal perspective.”

The most important item of business Sunday was choosing the speaker, where the slim Democratic majority re-elected incumbent House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.