Let Me Introduce Gov. David Paterson

Former Lt. Gov. David Paterson is now the Governor of New York. As everyone knows, Eliot Spitzer likes the ladies a bit too much. Goodbye! I want a blind, black governor here in North Carolina who tells jokes and has a quiet charm about him.

Here is footage from the swearing-in ceremony for Governor David Paterson at the Assembly chamber at the State Capitol in Albany. The first video is eight minutes of the beginning where Paterson cracks many jokes. It was rudely cut-off by CNN because some horse took a dump in Ohio or something and that is more pressing news.


The second video is the serious portion where Paterson discusses what New York faces.

Let me introduce: Governor David Paterson.


I will post transcript when available, but here is a section from the NY Times article.
Today, like we always do, in spite of the obstacles, regardless of the circumstances, we move forward. Of course I never expected to have the honor of serving as governor of New York. But our Constitution demands it. This transition today is an historic message to the world that we live among the same values that we profess, and that we are a government of laws and not individuals. Today we can be proud of our democracy.

Look, folks, this has been a very difficult week but there have been turbulent weeks in New York’s past and there will be anxious weeks in our near future, but we move forward. Today is Monday. There is work to be done. There was an oath to be taken, there’s trust that needs to be restored. There are issues that need to be addressed. And all of us, as we set to it, must be aware of one truth that rises above all else. It’s that New York families are more challenged today than they even were yesterday.

Calling for bipartisan unity, Mr. Paterson elicited loud applause when he declared, “Let us grab the unusual opportunities that circumstance has handed us today and put personal politics, party advantage and power struggles aside, in favor of service, in the interests of the people.”
In an indirect but unmistakable reference to his predecessor, Mr. Paterson quoted Robert F. Kennedy as saying, “No matter how talented an individual may be, no matter how much energy he might posses, regardless of how much integrity and honesty he or she may have, if that person is alone, they can accomplish very little.”

Mr. Paterson added:
And so what we are going to do from now on is what we always should have done: we are going to work together. With conviction in our brains and compassion in our hearts and the love for New York on our sleeves, we will dedicate ourselves to principle but always maintain the ability to listen. And now we look forward in this great state, we look forward with our eyes very much on the greatness of New York, and we look forward – ever forward – together.
Mr. Paterson acknowledged that to many he is “an unknown quantity,” but added, “What matters is what we are able to accomplish, today, tomorrow, and all the days ahead. It’s Monday, and there’s work that needs to be done.”

Then the new governor turned his attention to the state of the economy, declaring, “Our economy appears to be headed toward crisis.” He referred to the fire-sale-like takeover of Bear Stearns by JPMorganChase and the Federal Reserve’s intervention to provide liquidity to large investment firms.

“We are looking at an economy that is reeling and I must say to all of you in government and all of you in business that you must meet with me in the next couple of weeks and adjust our budget accordingly,” Mr. Paterson said, suggesting that budget austerity may be needed.

But Mr. Paterson also offered some hope. Again referring to his blindness, he said, “I know a little bit about finding one’s way through the dark.” He mentioned that he was born in Brooklyn and educated on Long Island and had lived in Harlem most of his life.

At 1:37 p.m., he declared, “Let me reintroduce myself: I am David Paterson and I am the governor of New York State!” Again, the crowd gave a standing ovation.
(cross-posted)

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