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Gov. Inslee delivers inaugural address, statewide officials sworn in

Washington National Guard and Washington State Patrol members surround the Washington State Capitol along with a newly fenced perimeter on Jan. 10, 2021 in Olympia, Washington. Gov. Jay Inslee authorized 750 Washington National Guard members on the eve of the 2021 legislative session, following recent breaches of the governor's mansion and the U.S. Capitol building by pro-Trump demonstrators. (Photo by David Ryder/Getty Images)

It was Inauguration Day in Washington state on Wednesday, as Jay Inslee was sworn in for his third term as governor. The governor then gave an inaugural address, delivered via video to Washingtonians and a remote Legislature.

The following newly elected or re-elected state officials were also sworn in at the same time as the governor: Lieutenant Governor Denny Heck, Secretary of State Kim Wyman, Treasurer Mike Pellicciotti, Attorney General Bob Ferguson, Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal, Auditor Pat McCarthy, Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler, and Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz.

Wyman was the lone Republican sworn in to a statewide position Wednesday. She, like Inslee, is also starting her third term in the role.

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The ceremony and address was not open to the public because of COVID-19 restrictions and security concerns. It was available to watch on TVW starting at 11 a.m.

Gov. Inslee’s third inaugural address was at 12:15 p.m., live streamed on TVW.

“I am so appreciative of this chance to serve again,” Gov. Inslee said. “We are embarking on a truly historic third term and legislative session.”

“So let’s talk straight: The last year has been challenging in ways none of us have ever experienced,” the governor continued. “It’s the kind of moment where we are called upon to dig deep, to work together, and to be resourceful like never before. Washingtonians are answering that call.”

By the end of this legislative session, Inslee says we’ll be able to say Washington state is more equitable, has more opportunities for careers and affordable housing, and is more committed to fighting climate change than ever before.

“We have big challenges that demand we take big steps. We are not going back to normal. We are going forward toward a new normal,” he said. “We are on a path in this legislative session to a more just normal, a healthier normal. And we’re not just talking about the pandemic.”

Gov. Inslee’s address focused on what he referred to as the “ingredients” of relief, recovery, and resilience.

“[No] matter what has come our way, I am confident, because Washingtonians have risen to the challenge,” he said. “We have seen remarkable heroism, diligence, and a stalwart commitment in our front-line workers; and we have seen it in all Washingtonians who know they are safer when every one of us is healthy. Washington is a resilient state. Washington knows how to recover. This is not going to stop Washington state’s eternal march of progress to a more just and equitable community.”

Read the full transcript of the governor’s address here.

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