Bernie Sanders' big mitten energy won the inauguration meme game – CNET

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were sworn in as president and vice president, respectively, on Wednesday in a fanfare-filled ceremony in Washington, DC. Though the public couldn’t attend, many people watched the events on TV or via livestreaming, and from singer Lady Gaga’s elaborate dove pin to Sen. Bernie Sanders’ giant mittens, they found plenty of opportunities for memes and jokes.

Smitten with mittens

Former presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont drew some fashion commentary for his large mittens and the large manila envelope he was carrying.

“Bernie looks like he’s running errands with his kids on Saturday morning,” one Twitter user wrote. Wrote another, “Bernie absolutely crushing Vermont dadcore.”

The mitten-maker herself, Vermont teacher Jen Ellis, spoke up.

“I made Bernie’s mittens as a gift a couple years ago,” Ellis tweeted. “They are made from repurposed wool sweaters and lined with fleece (made from recycled plastic bottles).”

Sanders’ warm, practical outfit inspired plenty of memes and jokes about his plans for the day. One tweet included a faux schedule for Sanders’ day, including “drop off dry cleaning,” “Joe’s thing” and “swing by the post office.”

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“Bernie dressed like the inauguration is on his to do list today but ain’t his whole day,” wrote one.

One photo in particular, showing Sanders sitting in a chair, inspired plenty of jokes, with many editing his image into different settings.

“When you get invited to a meeting but it should have been an email,” one said.

Sanders later defended his outfit to Gayle King on CBS This Morning.

“In Vermont, we know something about the cold, and we’re not so concerned about good fashion,” he said. “We want to keep warm, and that’s what I did today.”

The dove has landed

Lady Gaga also inspired some sartorial remarks. She wore an enormous gold dove pin as she sang the national anthem, and she explained its meaning in a tweet she shared that had a close-up photo of the pin. “A dove carrying an olive branch,” she wrote. “May we all make peace with each other.”

But some thought the pin looked more like the mockingjay, a fictional bird worn as a pin by heroine Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games book and movie series.

“Ladies and gentlemen welcome to the 1st Hunger Games,” wrote one Twitter user.

“Gaga’s wearing the mockingjay if you go by the book rather than the movie,” wrote another.

Instant photos

A moment that followed the swearing-in ceremony caught the attention of some. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer presented the new president and first lady Jill Biden with photographs of the just-completed events, which led to some jabs at the government’s technology knowledge.

“LOL, McCarthy & Hoyer give Biden & Harris instaphotos of the inauguration, like they’ve just gotten off the hot new roller coaster at Six Flags,” wrote Mike DeBonis of The Washington Post.

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And the night ended with a gigantic firework display that had some viewers marveling at the sheer amount of pyrotechnics.

“Whoever was in charge of gathering fireworks should get on vaccines,” said comedian Jordan Klepper.

Another person had some thoughts on the elaborate display, writing, “So, we don’t need to spend any of the inauguration budget on port-a-potties, additional Mall security, custodial services, etc? So we can spend it on something else? Say, like, fireworks?”


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