Wolf pivots to second term with new lieutenant governor Fetterman at his side
Gov. Tom Wolf took the oath of office for his second and last term — and he and his new lieutenant governor, John Fetterman, agreed Pennsylvania needs to channel the progress of the past four years to continue moving the commonwealth forward.
The two York natives were greeted by hundreds of residents and high-level politicians on a cold but sunny Tuesday, Jan. 15, outside the Capitol's East Wing.
While Fetterman took his oath and was handed the gavel on the Senate floor earlier in the morning, Wolf braved the cold alongside his wife, Frances, as he stood in front of some of the state's most important figures.
"We've gone from a commonwealth at a crossroads to a commonwealth on a comeback," Wolf said. "The accomplishments of the last four years are not my accomplishments. They are our accomplishments."
Those attending the swearing-in ceremony included former governors Tom Ridge and Mark Schweiker as well as Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto and Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney.
But the new political partners held the spotlight firmly, as they cited pension reform, job creation, the legalization of medical marijuana and more issues in reflection of the administration's successes.
Although those accomplishments are important, they said, Wolf's fresh term is what the administration now has its sights on.
"Pennsylvanians have earned the right to be optimistic about our future," Wolf said. "As we look forward to the next four years, I want us to be ambitious in imagining the Pennsylvania we can build together."
Fetterman, uncharacteristically sporting a black suit and tie, reinforced the importance of bipartisanship in the future — including four more state budgets, which for the first three years didn't receive Wolf's signature.
"The governor and I want to get things done that benefit the commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and we know we need to do that all collectively, together," Fetterman said.
This year's first legislative session under new executive branch leadership will take place Wednesday, Jan.16, with Fetterman overseeing his first Senate session.
But for the rest of Tuesday, there was an open house at the governor's mansion from 2 to 4 p.m. and an inaugural celebration party from 7 to 11 p.m. at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center.
During the nighttime celebration, a handful of local talents were scheduled to provide entertainment, including The Roots, a Grammy-award winning band from Philadelphia. Other performers include:
- DJ Headrush, an emcee from Philadelphia.
- Katie Schreckengast, winner of Miss Pennsylvania 2017 and saxophone soloist from Palmyra, Lebanon County.
- The Rossums, a gospel group from York County.
- Bluestone, a bluegrass band with members from Adams and York counties.
- YWCA Temple Guard Drill Team, a march and dance performing group from York County.
— Logan Hullinger can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter at @LoganHullYD.