Monday is inauguration day for Governor-elect Mike Pence and that means the transition from one administration to another was in full view at the Statehouse today. Mike Pence and Mitch Daniels were in offices on opposite sides of the Statehouse rotunda. The work being done and the attitudes applied were a study in contrasts.
Boxes of files, souvenirs, and mementos were wheeled out of the governor’s office, taken to a Purdue University van parked in the spot where Mike Pence will be given the oath of office Monday. The van will take the belongings of the outgoing governor to West Lafayette, some to his Purdue office, and some to the President’s residence that he will occupy. Back in the office Daniels finds a countdown clock given to him by Jeb Bush as a reminder to accomplish something every day and he reads it aloud. “Two days, 11 hours, 57 minutes,” he says.
Down the hall the incoming governor sat in a tension-filled meeting going over details of his swearing-in as well as plans for his first actions. Executive orders are already being prepared. “It’s a big challenge but we’ll be ready for it,” said Pence. “I’m very humbled by the opportunity but very anxious to get started.”
It’s a tough job and I asked Daniels if he feel’s like a burden has been lifted. “Well, ask me next week,” he said explaining that last night’s rain might lead to one last emergency response. “You worry about those inevitable tragedies and disasters,” he said, “but it’s a privilege more than a burden.” And now it’s time to move on.
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