2:22 am
Mon March 17, 2008

Paterson Takes Oath of Office, Promises to Restore Trust

Albany, NY – David Paterson took the oath of office Monday, becoming the 55th governor of New York State. The ceremony capped off a tumultuous week of sex scandal, disgrace and the resignation of Eliot Spitzer.

Spitzer officially stepped down at noon. One hour later, Paterson ascended to the top post, receiving a standing ovation from the packed Assembly room chamber. Governor Paterson promised his administration will be one of public service.

"We move forward. Today is Monday. There is work to be done," Paterson said. "There was an oath to be taken. There's trust that needs to be restored. There are issues that need to be addressed."

Paterson said he will get right to work on the state budget and other matters. The Legislature faces an April 1 deadline to pass an estimated $124 billion budget.

The legally blind, 53 year-old Harlem Democrat is the state's first governor with a disability, as well as its first African American governor.

"This transition today is an historic message to the world: That we live by the same values that we profess, and we are a government of laws, not individuals," Paterson said.

Presidential candidate Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, former Governor George Pataki and Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown attended the ceremony. Spitzer was not in attendance.

Click the "listen" icon above to hear Paterson's address now or use your podcasting software to download it to your computer or iPod.