This morning Edmund G. Brown Jr., also known as Jerry Brown, was inaugurated as the 39th Governor of California at Memorial Auditorium in Sacramento. This is his third inauguration as the Governor of the Golden State.
The inaugural ceremony began at 11:00 a.m. and opened with students from the Oakland School for the Arts choir singing the well-known folk song "This Land is Your Land." The Oakland School for the Arts is a public school established by then Mayor of Oakland Jerry Brown in 2002.
The pledge of allegiance was led by an honor guard of cadets from the Oakland Military Institute, a public charter school founded by Jerry Brown in 2001 while he served as Oakland's mayor.
The First Lady of California, Anne Gust Brown, introduced her husband on what she described as an emotional day.
The oath of office was administered by the newly sworn in 28th Chief Justice of California, Tani Cantil-Sakauye. Governor Brown took the oath of office in front of a packed auditorium with his wife by his side and the Oakland School for the Arts choir standing behind him. His hand rested on a bible that once belonged to the grandfather of Anne Gust Brown. It is the same bible that the newly inaugurated Governor and First Lady used for their wedding in 2005.
While taking the oath of office, Governor Brown emphatically stated more than once that he accepted the office of California's governor with no mental reservation. Governor Brown was undoubtedly referring to the range of serious problems California faces. California is plagued by a budget deficit that may be as high as $28 billion. According to California Employment Development Department statistics, unemployment is at 12.4%. In Los Angeles County, 300,219 individuals were certified for unemployment benefits in October 2010.
Governor Brown addressed Californians in his inaugural speech and re-stated his campaign promises of always speaking the truth, no new taxes without voter approval, and returning control to local government.
He spoke about the budget he will present next week, stating that it would be "painful but honest" and a "tough budget for tough times." He reminded us that government wastes money but also pays for things that people want.
Governor Brown spoke fondly of his family, including his father, the former Governor Edmund G. "Pat" Brown Sr., who took the oath of office 52 years ago.
Governor Brown pledged his continued loyalty to California. He stated his desire to make schools places of real learning and his commitment to energy and energy efficiency.
Governor Brown ended his speech on a note of strength and optimism with the lines from the song "California here I come right back where I started from."
Governor Brown's reception will be a frugal one. The menu includes hot dogs, potato chips, and water.
The inauguration was televised lived to Los Angeles area audiences by C-SPAN2.