Gov. John Kasich took a ceremonial oath Monday afternoon in front of hundreds at the Ohio Theatre, half a block from the Ohio Capitol Building, where he says he will work to curb Ohio’s budget deficit and create more jobs.
The governor’s official signing-in, along with Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor, was shortly after midnight Monday in the Ohio Senate Chamber of the Statehouse, across the street.
Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives John Boehner and supporters welcomed Kasich’s inauguration.
Still, Kasich was met with disapproval from half a dozen people on the steps of the Statehouse holding Strickland/Brown campaign posters from last fall’s heated race between former Gov. Ted Strickland and Kasich.
The crowd inside the theatre bustled with an energy that alluded to Kasich’s “New Day” inaugural slogan.
Taylor was ceremoniously sworn in at 12:15 p.m., Kasich directly following. Both were met with standing ovations and applause.
Following his oath, Kasich spoke for about 20 minutes about his “faith, family and friends.”
“It’s the supporters that matter, not the people with big money, though we like them too,” Kasich said. “I used to say ‘I’ a lot … But now it’s just ‘we’.”
Kasich, who was maimed as a corporate-oriented candidate during the campaign stressed that he is a public servant.
“It is my only purpose, it is my only passion,” Kasich said about Ohio’s economy. “Nothing will stand in our way.”
Kasich said he wants to help Ohio realize its promise and its destiny.
“It is so exciting to be a part of a movement that answers the bell,” he said. “As Ohio goes, so does America. They are watching us.”
But he also warned Ohioans against being selfish and against partisan prejudice.
“We are not Republicans, we are not Democrats. We are Ohioans, we are Buckeyes … Our enemies are those who refuse the power of the team,” he said. “We will defeat them.”
Kasich came to office in a landslide Republican victory in November. He was accompanied by Taylor as well as U.S. Representative for Ohio’s 15th Congressional District Steve Stivers and Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted.
The event culminated with a prayer, in part for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and those affected by the tragic shooting earlier this week in Arizona, and The Ohio State University Glee Club sang “Carmen Ohio.”