Gov. Katie Hobbs is sworn in while hiding from reporters
Arizona got a new set of leaders on Monday, only you wouldn’t know it unless you’re a fan of Facebook.
The state’s transition to Democratic rule (in the top three offices, at least) was peaceful.
It just wasn’t public.
No reporters were allowed inside to witness the event or, as importantly, to pose questions to the officials who will now run our state. Instead, the governor who vowed transparency livestreamed the event on her Facebook page.
Is this a sign of what's to come?
Granted, Monday was a state holiday and Gov. Katie Hobbs will stage a ceremonial inauguration on Thursday – thanks to various special interests that are kicking in an undisclosed amount to pay for the celebration.
But Hobbs assumed power at 10 a.m. on Monday and in her first official act, she decided to take the public’s business private. She refused to allow reporters to witness the event, granting access only to an AP pool photographer.
If that's a sign of what is to come, it's going to be a long four years.
New administration:What to watch as Katie Hobbs takes power
Naturally, Democrats jumped all over me on Twitter for questioning her decision to bar the media from the witnessing the transition of power in every state elective office.
“Stop making this a big deal,” replied one.
“I don’t blame them with all the hate (Kari) Lake has aroused,” said another.
“A quiet transfer of power is preferred over a media spectacle you all create because you’re for sure bring up Kari, Abe, Cowboy Mark in the media Q and A. Let’s finally get this state back on track and move on from 2020,” wrote another.
Katie Hobbs can't duck anyone anymore
Oh, the horror. That the state’s new governor, new attorney general, new secretary of state, new state superintendent and returning state treasurer should have to potentially face questions from reporters.
Hobbs spent a fair amount of time ducking questions on the campaign trail (as did her opponent, Kari Lake) and her refusal to debate her opponent became national news.
But now she’s the governor of more than seven million Arizonans and her ducking days are over. Or they should be.
Hobbs absolutely deserves a chance to show us what she’s got. After 14 years of Republican rule, I, for one, look forward to seeing what she’s got.
In public, that is. Not on a Facebook feed.
Reach Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at @LaurieRoberts.
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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs is sworn in while hiding from reporters