WISCREPORT.COM - In his second Inaugural Address, Governor Jim Doyle pledged to focus on making health care more affordable and accessible to hardworking Wisconsin families and to ensure that Wisconsin is a place where our young people's dreams can be realized. The Governor also spoke of the tremendous changes happening around the world and issued a call to action for the state to rise up to meet the challenges of our time.
"The opportunities before us in the changing world of 2007 could not be imagined a century or even a decade ago," Governor Doyle said. "As public servants, we are given a short but sacred chance to serve the state we love. And it is my firm goal that four years from now - and four decades from now - people will look back at these years and say: in a changing and challenging time, we came together to seize the boundless opportunities before us."
The Governor said that Wisconsin's future rests with the youngest generation, and that we have a shared responsibility to help them achieve their dreams by instilling Wisconsin values in them and providing quality education, job opportunity, and strong communities. The Governor invoked the story of his childhood hero, Hank Aaron, who found the support he needed in Wisconsin as a young man and ultimately became the best ballplayer of all time.
"Just like Hank Aaron, every child in Wisconsin has been blessed with his or her own unique gifts," Governor Doyle said. "It is up to all of us to help them be realized. Our state must be a place where dreams can take flight, where every young person can go as far as talent and hard work will take them."
Governor Doyle also pledged a major focus during his second term on health care, from making health care premiums tax deductible for hardworking families, to reducing the cost of health care for families and businesses, to ensuring that every Wisconsin child has access to health insurance. The Governor also promised to continue with his longtime commitment to combating the scourge of teen smoking.
"The rising price of health care is one of the great challenges of our time," Governor Doyle said. "It affects the healthy as well as the sick, the wealthy as well as the poor, Democrats as well as Republicans, and all of us must be part of solving it."
"Too many of our citizens simply cannot afford care," Governor Doyle continued. "Too many of our families live in fear that one illness could cause them to lose everything they worked so hard for. This is not only an economic crisis, it's a human crisis ... and it demands action now. One state can't solve the problem all on its own ... but one state - our state - can and will lead the way in health care reform."
Governor Doyle delivered his inaugural address in the Capitol Rotunda in Madison surrounded by kids from Boys and Girls Clubs throughout Wisconsin, as well as former Governor Tony Earl, Former Governor Martin Schreiber, tribal leaders, and Major General Al Wilkening.
Emceed by the Governor's sister, Catey Doyle, the ceremony began with a performance from Ho-Chunk Nation members, followed by a performance from the 132nd Army Band, a presentation of colors from the Color Guard, the singing of the National Anthem by Cantor Karen Berman of Congregation Shalom in Milwaukee, as well as the Pledge of Allegiance by Vanessa Marie Crotteau.