By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
On Monday, January 19, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley and other statewide elected officials were sworn in to office on a sunny day in Montgomery.
The Governor was sworn in by Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore.
For Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) this marked the official start of his second term in office as Alabama’s Fourth Republican Governor since Reconstruction ended.
Gov. Bentley said, “We will face our challenges head on. We will work with both parties, across the aisle, to make our state better, because that’s what you expect of us. Working together there is no challenge we cannot overcome.”
Gov. Bentley said, “I love this State. I love the people of this State. You have asked me to continue to serve you, to be your Governor. And I want to thank you, Alabama, from the bottom of my heart.”
Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey (R) was also reelected for a second term by the voters of Alabama in November. Lt. Gov. Ivey said, “Thank you to the people of Alabama for allowing me to be inaugurated once again.”
Ivey said, “To Gov. Robert Bentley I say job well done and I look forward to working together again.” Ivey said that when composer Johann Sebastian Bach was asked why he composed music he said, “For the glory of God and the good of mankind.”
Lt. Gov. Ivey said that these same principles were demonstrated by our Founding fathers in creating and sustaining Democracy for over 230 years. Ivey said that she and Alabama’s elected leaders need to work for the Glory of God and the good of mankind.
Lt. Governor Ivey said, “To Governor Bentley and the other office holders of Alabama I will work with you. To the people of Alabama, I will serve you…We have many challenges and opportunities but we all want to make sure that we make things better when we finish than when we begin.”
Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange (R) was sworn in for his second term in office. AG Strange was sworn in by federal judge and former AG Bill Pryor. AG Strange said, “thank you for giving me the honor of holding this great office.” AG Strange asked everyone there to thank a law enforcement officer and described them as the thin line between chaos and order.
Alabama Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries John McMillan (R) joined the group of elected officials being sworn in. Commissioner McMillan said, “I have been involved in state government for over 40 years. It is never going to be more important for the citizens of Alabama to be attuned to what happens in your State capital.”
Commissioner McMillan warned that, “By 2050 we are going to have to double our production of food and fiber if we are going to sustain our populace.”
Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill (R) was sworn in for his first term in office.
Merrill was sworn in by his father Probate Judge Horace Merrill. Merrill thanked the people for electing him and promised honest fair elections, timely processing of business filings and that we want to make sure that any family that utilizes the Office of Secretary of State for International adoptions will be treated like a member of their family. Merrill called his election, “The greatest honor of my life.”
Sec. of State Merrill said, “I am honored and humbled to be your 62nd Secretary of State.”
Alabama State Treasurer Young Boozer (R) was sworn in for his second term in office.
Treasurer Boozer said, “Yes, that’s my real name. We have saved millions of dollars for the taxpayers of Alabama; but there is more to do…It is time to get started on the next round for young Boozer.”
Alabama State Auditor Jim Zeigler (R) was sworn in for his first term in office as Alabama’s auditor.
Zeigler said, “Thank you for hiring me to work for you in the job of State Auditor.” Zeigler said that with a projected $250 million shortfall in the 2015 General Fund that the State must make sure that no money is wasted. Zeigler vowed to make it his mission is to make sure that the state is better stewards of your tax dollars
PSC Commissioner Jeremy Oden (R) was the first statewide office holder to be sworn in. He was followed by Chris “Chip” Beeker (R). Commissioner Oden was appointed by Governor Bentley to finish Twinkle Andress’s unfinished term. This is Beeker’s first term in office with the PSC.
This is the second inauguration in modern history with no Democrats being sworn in into any statewide office as the Alabama Republican Party has dominated State elections since 2010.
The members of the State school board were also inaugurated at the Monday event which took place on Martin Luther King Day.
The event was followed by a massive parade that featured numerous marching bands from across Alabama.