Katie Hobbs was sworn in Monday to become Arizona’s 24th governor and the first Democrat to hold the position since 2009.
Hobbs was inaugurated in a private ceremony at the state Capitol, where she formally took over from Republican Doug Ducey. A public inauguration is scheduled for Thursday for the governor and others who will assume positions in the state.
Hobbs was accompanied by her parents, husband and two children as she placed her hand on a family Bible and was sworn in in the lobby of the governor’s offices, according to a live broadcast of the event, which was not open to the public or public. press. Her mother’s tears of happiness distracted the incoming governor, who paused to quip, “Stop it, Mom!”
He then posed with his family for photos and signed a certificate.
Hobbs is the outgoing secretary of state and was previously a state legislator who rose to be the ranking Democrat in the Senate. In her role as governor she will have to work with a narrowly Republican controlled House and Senate. The new legislature will meet for the first time next week.
Hobbs assumes command of a state with a strong economy and a solid financial position, with a large budget surplus projected for the next fiscal year.
But there are headwinds on the horizon. Phoenix has one of the highest levels of inflation in the country and housing costs have skyrocketed as rapid population growth outpaced home construction, in contradiction to the state’s reputation for affordability. And the water supply is limited due to the drought.
Hobbs narrowly defeated Republican Kari Lake, a former television host backed by former President Donald Trump.