Nearly 85 people attended Governor Branstad’s resignation and swearing in as US Ambassador to China Wednesday at the statehouse. Among those present were state legislative leaders including Senate President Jack Whitver, Senate Majority Leader Bill Dix, House Speaker Linda Upmeyer and House Majority Leader Chris Hagenow.
Also in attendance were top state officials, including Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, Secretary of State Paul Pate, Auditor Mary Mosiman, Attorney General Tom Miller and Adjutant General of the Iowa National Guard Timothy Orr.
Brandstand’s family was also there, including five of his grandchildren who sat in the front row, along with numerous staffers and aids.
Everyone gathered to hear Branstad’s short speech from a podium perched atop the desk he uses for formal bill signings. A plaque with “Governor Terry E. Branstad” stood in front of it, and a photo of Chinese diplomats visiting Iowa displayed behind him.
Soon-to-be-Governor Kim Reynolds watched from the front, beaming when Branstad highlighted her achievements and his confidence in her as the state’s next chief executive. Smiling attendees captured Branstad’s oath of office with camera phones held aloft.
Following his oath, Branstad briefly stopped to shake hands and hug family members before aids quickly funneled him out of his formal office to prepare for Reynolds’ speech.
Kim Reynolds was sworn in as Iowa Governor shortly afterward. In her speech she outlined what her priorities are going forward: