Walker takes oath of office from Van Hollen - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Walker takes oath of office from Van Hollen

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By Capitol Bureau Chief Bob Schaper - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MADISON (WKOW) -- Gov.-elect Scott Walker took the official oath of office on Thursday afternoon, sworn in by Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen.

The move, necessitated by Friday's holiday and the closure of the secretary of state's office, means Walker will become governor at 12:01 a.m. on Monday. His oath inside the Capitol on Monday will be strictly ceremonial and taken in the north gallery, closer, Walker said, to the state's constitution.

"I'm up for it, but there's a pretty heavy weight there," Walker said on Friday.

He says that weight comes from the history of those who've come before.

"All our ancestors up until now have given us this great state, and now it's upon me to help lead the state into the future," Walker said.

A future that, at least in the short term, is painted red with debt.

"The things they faced two years ago pale in comparison to what we're going to face," Walker said. "Now, we're up to it, we're going to get it done, we're going to balance the budget without raising taxes, but we're going to have to be pretty aggressive.

Meanwhile, the governor's mansion in Maple Bluff is being readied by the staff. Walker and his family are expected to move in sometime week after next -- part of a personal transition to go along with the official transition.

"People forget about that," Walker said. "It's a transition from one office to the next. But for Tonette and my two sons it's gonna be an awful lot of a challenge as well."

A challenge that he says has been lightened by Gov. Jim Doyle and the first lady.

"Particularly Mrs. Doyle, Jessica Doyle, for being phenomenal and helping my wife, Tonette," Walker said. "She brought her over to the house a couple times, showed her and the kids around."

Walker plans to use the mansion as an economic development tool.

"I saw Tommy Thompson when he was governor use that quite effectively, to bring people in, to bring prospective business leaders in, to really do that as a way to showcase the state," he said.

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