Gov. Dannel Malloy took the oath of office and gave his 2015 inaugural address Wednesday afternoon after being sworn in as governor, marking the official start of his second term. The following is the full text of his inaugural address, as prepared:
My fellow Connecticut residents – thank you.
Thank you to all of the distinguished public servants, clergy members, and other honored guests joining us today.
Thank you to the best Lt. Governor in the United States of America, Nancy Wyman.
Thank you to everyone here whose hard work and dedication have made this day possible.
And thank you most of all to my beloved wife, Cathy, and our three terrific boys, Dannel, Ben, and Sam.
Today marks a new chapter. A chapter in a story that began long before any of us were here, and one that will continue on long after our contributions end.
It’s the story of who we are as a state, and as a people. It’s about the challenges we face, and how we face them. It’s about where we’ve been, and where we’re going next.
Our unyielding belief in the story of Connecticut is why so many of us here today first chose to run for public office.
It’s why our police and firefighters put themselves in harm’s way keeping Connecticut neighborhoods safe.
It’s why teachers teach, and working mothers and fathers still find time to volunteer at their children’s school.
It’s why, in this past election, Connecticut voters turned out to the polls in higher numbers than almost any other state.
This past chapter – these four years now behind us – were not easy.
We faced difficult choices, with few simple answers. We had contentious debates, even among friends. We weathered historic storms from which we had to rebuild. We were shaken by unthinkable tragedy in Newtown, and we found consolation within one another.
In the face of adversity, we also made progress.
We saw the creation of more than 75,000 new private sector jobs, the largest job growth Connecticut has seen in decades.
Thousands more children were given the opportunity of a quality pre-K experience. Graduation rates soared to new heights, while crime declined to historic lows.
We improved working conditions, and we raised the minimum wage.
None of this progress came easily. But history has taught us that meaningful change rarely comes with the full-throated support of every public official, or every state resident.
President James Madison said that “democracies have ever-been spectacles of turbulence and contention.” Lord knows we’ve proven that true here in Connecticut. We’ve won our progress through hard work and spirited debate, by pushing forward even when it would have been so much easier to stand still.
My fellow citizens, let that be our badge of honor – that during difficult times, while others shied away from hard decisions, we made them. That in the face of fierce obstacles, we did not retreat. That during crises, we banded together.
We chose to believe that there is more that unites us in Connecticut, than divides us.
We all want a strong economy that rewards hard work with a fair wage. Where no one who works full time ever has to live in poverty, and where every family can feel economically secure.
We all want a better future for our children – strong schools and a great education that takes our kids from pre-k all the way through college and beyond.
We all want our streets and neighborhoods to be safe places to work and to live, where we enforce our laws strictly, and allow those who run afoul of them to earn a second chance, because we are all our brother’s keeper.
We all want cheaper, cleaner, and more reliable energy for our citizens and for our businesses.
And we all want roads, highways, buses, trains, ports, and airports that work for every city and town, for every business, and for every person in our state.
My friends, let these shared beliefs be our guide as we pen this next chapter in our state’s history.
Today, I say to my fellow citizens – Democrats, Independents, and Republicans alike – that no one party or one policy maker holds a monopoly on good ideas. We might not always agree on the details, but we can agree that we want our children to inherit a better Connecticut than we were given.
Over the next four years we will face new challenges, but we will also be presented with new opportunities.
Together, let us continue to buck the national trends of obstruction and gridlock. Let us confront hard realities, tackle old problems with renewed vigor, and set aside short-term convenience in favor of long-term prosperity. Let us dismiss petty partisanship that divides us, and focus instead on what binds us to one another.
If we can do that – if we can work together – we can grow our economy and grow more good paying jobs with good benefits.
We can make sure all our children get a great education in a great public school.
We can build a transportation system that better connects us to one another and to the rest of the world.
And we can continue to lift more and more of our neighbors into a bigger, more inclusive middle class.
That is our challenge.
Thank you, may God bless you, and may God bless the great State of Connecticut.