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In photos: The first day of the history-making 116th Congress

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez laughs.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.). Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Members of the 116th Congress were sworn in on Thursday, officially becoming the most racially diverse and female-strong Congress in U.S. history.

The big picture: The freshmen class includes 24 people of color, the first Native American congresswomen, the first Muslim congresswomen, 42 new female members and the youngest person ever elected. Nancy Pelosi become the first person since 1955 to reclaim the speaker's gavel.

House of Representatives

Nancy Pelosi holds gavel smiling.
Newly elected Speaker Nancy Pelosi holds the gavel during the opening session of the 116th Congress. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images
Nancy Pelosi blows a kiss on the House floor in pink dress.
Pelosi blows a kiss to applause from the chamber. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez takes her oath.
Ocasio-Cortez, the youngest member of Congress ever elected, takes her oath. Photo: Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images
Debbie Wasserman Schultz speaks with Ilhan Omar.
Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) and Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), one of the first Muslim women in Congress. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images
Deb Haaland, Barbara Lee, and children pose for a picture.
Reps. Deb Haaland (D-N.M.), Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) and children pose for a photo. Photo: Win McNamee via Getty Images
Eric Swalwell holds his baby.
Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) holds his infant daughter. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images
Employee hanging speaker of the house nancy pelosi sign above doorway
Architect of the Capitol employee Gary Bullis hangs the new sign at the entrance to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi's office suite. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call via Getty Images

Senate

Mitt Romney being sworn in, next to his wife and Mike Pence.
Vice President Mike Pence swears in Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), who is flanked by his wife, Ann. Photo: Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images
Kirsten Sinema sworn in by Mike Pence.
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), the first openly bisexual woman in Congress, is sworn in by Pence. Photo: Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images

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