Stitt Inaugurated As Oklahoma's 28th Governor, Other State Leaders Sworn In


Monday, January 14th 2019, 1:34 pm
By: LeighAnne Manwarren


Kevin Stitt is officially the 28th governor of Oklahoma.

Stitt was sworn in during a ceremony Monday morning on the state Capitol steps in Oklahoma City. 

During Stitt's inauguration speech, he asked Oklahomans to join him to make Oklahoma a top 10 state. 

"For us to be successful, I need you to join me. State government is not the sole answer to our problems," he said. "We must get involved in our schools, in our churches, in our neighborhoods, in our local non-profits to diagnose and solve the unique challenges county-by-county, that no person falls through the cracks - because every life in Oklahoma is worthy of our respect and help."

Stitt's administration will focus on state government accountability, education and criminal justice reform as the start for Oklahoma's turnaround, he said.

Stitt promised his administration would get to the bottom of every tax dollar spent.

"Our current system gives agencies too much independence from the voter – they have the ability to ignore executive orders, skirt around laws passed by the legislature, hide pockets of money, and protect their own interests by hiring lobbyists," he said.

During the campaign, Stitt was criticized for not being "pro-education" candidate. He addressed this issue during his speech and said Oklahoma's turnaround beings with education.

He said he was proud of the progress made last year but more progress was needed, and more government money is not the sole answer to fixing the state's education system.

"We will break down silos between common education, career tech, and higher education," Stitt said. "We need families working together with the school to help children unlock their full potential and overcome all odds."

Stitt recognized his predecessor Mary Fallin and her efforts at criminal justice reforms in the state.

He said he would look into extreme lengths of prison time for people convicted of non-violent crimes in Oklahoma.

"These sentences make reintegration into society much more challenging. They often destroy families and fall short in respecting the dignity, worth and potential of people who have made mistakes and need help," Stitt said. "As a state, we must do better, and we must believe in the power of second chances, of grace and redemption."

 

 

 

 

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