FRANKFORT, Ky. (WYMT/AP) - Kentucky constitutional officers elected in November were sworn into office Monday morning.
Daniel Cameron was sworn in as Kentucky's 51st attorney general during a midnight ceremony. He is the first African American independently elected to state office in Kentucky history, and the first Republican attorney general since World War II.
“Today’s ceremony is significant for many reasons, chief among them that it marks a new day for the Office of the Attorney General,” said Cameron. “We will reclaim the role of the Attorney General as Chief Law Enforcement Officer for the Commonwealth, and we will make the safety of every man, woman, and child the core of our mission. This is an office of action, and I stand ready to partner with our law enforcement community and our Commonwealth’s and County Attorneys to protect Kentuckians. As your attorney general, I will work diligently on behalf of all Kentuckians to be the leading voice on child abuse, human trafficking, and the drug epidemic.”
Secretary of State Michael Adams, Auditor Mike Harmon, Treasurer Allison Ball and Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles were also sworn in Monday morning at 10 a.m.
Adams takes over an office that was plagued by investigation and questions over how voter data was used. He said he has several goals for the office, including restoring faith in the voting system.
"Number one, govern with integrity, not going to see investigations in my administration. Number two, to pass a photo ID law for our elections. And number three, clean up our voter rolls," Adam listed.
It will be the second term for Harmon, Ball and Quarles. Cameron was appointed in December to fulfill the term of his predecessor, Democrat Andy Beshear, who was elected governor and took office last month.
Beshear spoke at the ceremony Monday and said Kentuckians made their choice and showed they are tired of bitterness. He then called for unity and asked the new leaders to "show people that we can find common ground."
"Where we also disagree, even on issues we care about, on causes we care about, we do it in ways that does not involved name-calling or attacks," the governor said.
Beshear said he looks forward to discussions on prison reform, solving a teacher shortage, medicinal marijuana and possibly sports betting.
"The fact is we are losing dollars through expanded gaming, through virtually every state around us. Right now it seems sports betting has the most momentum behind it," Beshear said.
The governor said sports betting could bring in $20-40 million.
“Today is a historic day for our Commonwealth and the Republican Party of Kentucky. For the first time in decades, Republicans now hold the offices of secretary of state, attorney general, auditor, treasurer and agriculture commissioner simultaneously. Congratulations to Secretary of State Michael Adams, Attorney General Daniel Cameron, Auditor Mike Harmon, Treasurer Allison Ball and Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles," the Republican Party of Kentucky said in a written statement. "There can be no doubt that 2019 was one of the most successful elections Kentucky Republicans have ever seen. With more GOP leaders in Frankfort to partner with our veto-proof legislative supermajorities, the Republican Party and our principles of pro-growth, conservative reform have never been stronger. Kentucky Republicans are excited to keep moving our state forward – and to be carrying this historic momentum into this year’s elections to reelect President Donald Trump and our state and federal lawmakers.”
The 60-day General Assembly session gavels in at noon Tuesday and runs through mid-April.