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Wall Street executive sworn in to replace Gov. Christie

Wall Street executive sworn in to replace Gov. Christie

Wall Street executive sworn in to replace Gov. Christie

Phil Murphy addresses the crowd at the War Memorial in Trenton.

Murphy, a Democrat and former Wall Street banker who has never held elected office, was sworn in as New Jersey's 56th governor shortly before noon on Tuesday amid the traditional pageantry accompanying the transfer of power in the state capital.

The new governor earned his fortune, which he used to help win the Democratic nomination past year, as an executive at Goldman Sachs.

Murphy put his hand on the same bible that President John F. Kennedy - his political hero and fellow MA native - used to be sworn in 57 years ago.

Murphy asked the Legislature to send him bills that raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, promote equal pay for women and paid sick leave for workers, make voting more accessible and strengthen gun laws.

The proposal, S-3477/A-5200 passed the state legislature by a unanimous vote earlier this month and establishes the crime of possessing or selling a bump stock or trigger crank in New Jersey as a felony.

Murphy acknowledged, hard work lies ahead, and, as I've also made clear, the Assembly is ready to do hard things, stand up for middle-class families and boost our economy. He took a moment to recognize the diversity of his cabinet, including Gurbir Grewal, the first Sikh-American attorney general in the nation; Marlene Caride, the first Latina to lead the Department of Banking and Insurance; and Jemal Beale, the first African-American to lead the state's National Guard. The tweet featured Murphy, his wife and their children in a group hug.

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Christie is deeply unpopular as he leaves office, with his job approval rating in polls in the teens.

Murphy also thanked former Christie for his service and praised his work on the opioid crisis, the AP reported.

Murphy, who like Kennedy grew up in MA, also served several years under the Obama administration as ambassador to Germany. "We are blessed by having many of them here tonight", Murphy said.

Christie has conservative views on taxes, opposes marijuana legalization and fights bitterly with labor unions over public pensions and education spending. The state needs to fund its public schools and deliver on the promise of property tax relief, he said. Both the state Assembly and Senate are now controlled by the Democrats.

Some of the issues Murphy mentioned affect the state directly, such as opposing the recent tax reform or federal interest in drilling for oil off the Jersey Shore.

In a 22-minute inaugural address that brimmed with optimism, Murphy echoed his campaign slogan and consistently vowed "a fairer, stronger New Jersey".

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