TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Former Wall Street executive Phil Murphy became New Jersey’s 56th governor Tuesday, taking the oath on the same Bible that President John F. Kennedy was sworn in on as he replaced Republican Gov. Chris Christie.
Murphy’s wife, Tammy, and their four children joined him on stage as he was sworn in by state Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner. Murphy’s running mate, former Assemblywoman Sheila Oliver, was also sworn in as lieutenant governor.
A salute of cannons then went off outside of the ceremony at the grand War Memorial in Trenton and Murphy went down a line of officials shaking hands.
“The work of our administration will be about you, your families and your communities,” Murphy said in his inaugural address. “We will never lose sight that we are one state and one family, with different beliefs but common dreams and that we do not succeed unless we all succeed together.”
He promised a better life and better future in the Garden State, CBS2’s Meg Baker reported.
“A stronger and fairer New Jersey is rooted in an economy that creates better jobs and provides higher wages,” he said. “Where innovative companies are born, and where millennials will want to live, and where seniors will want to retire.”
Murphy referred to his upbringing in a working poor family in Boston, saying his parents pushed him to dream bigger.
“They knew that we had the same God-given gifts as any kids from a well-off family,” he said. “But they also knew that we had a government that had our backs, should we need a hand up to achieve whatever we wanted.”
He also praised Christie for his work addressing the opioid crisis and his role as a father. He also thanked him for over two decades of public service to the state.
Before the ceremony, Murphy and his wife attended a prayer service at Shiloh Baptist Church in Trenton. An inaugural ball Tuesday night was to be held under a tent at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford.
Most people at the Bridge Way Diner said they still don’t know much about Murphy, but know he’s got a lot of work to do.
“The jury is still out, right? I think it’s too early to tell,” Old Bridge resident Mitch Hefter told CBS2’s Meg Baker. “A lot of time there’s a lot of campaign promises.”
“We are for the people and I feel the government has to be more for us – the working class,” said Old Bridge resident Gina Meyer.
One top priority for most everyone Baker spoke to was taxes.
“I hope he doesn’t raise taxes but with all the things he promised, there is no way he can’t,” Tinton Falls resident Jackie Barker said.
“When somebody warns you that they’re going to raise taxes, you really gotta hold on to your pocketbook,” said Old Bridge resident Susan Bloomig.
“Don’t know much about Phil Murphy, hope the taxes go down a little bit,” another Old Bridge resident said.
Those who commute into New York asked that Murphy makes fixing NJ TRANSIT a priority. For others, the plea was personal.
“I hope he deals with the epidemic with the drug situation, because it’s really serious,” Old Bridge resident Al Mercavl said.
Murphy campaigned on more funding for public education, free college, money towards the public employee pension fund and creating a state bank, as CBS2’s Jessica Layton reported.
“A stronger and fairer New Jersey funds its public schools and delivers on the promise of property tax relief,” he said. “It makes a four-year college more affordable and provides free access to community college.”
Hours after being sworn in, he signed his first executive order calling for equal pay for women.
“To reaffirm our support for women’s health and Planned Parenthood,” he said. “A bill to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, a bill to promote equal pay for women.”
Along with raising taxes, he believes he’ll find millions in state revenue by legalizing marijuana within his first 100 days in office.
“A stronger and fairer New Jersey embraces comprehensive criminal justice reform comprehensively, and that includes a process to legalize marijuana,” he said Tuesday.
“I’m all for that. I’m a child of the ‘60s,” New Jersey resident Linda Letterman told Baker.
In a ride-along this weekend, Murphy took a tour of NJ TRANSIT and focused on failing infrastructure.
“The one thing you got to get right is commuter rail and we’ve not gotten it right,” he said.
According to published reports, he’s asking high ranking NJ TRANSIT employees to submit their resignations that would be effective as he’s sworn in, CBS2’s Magdalena Doris reported.
“We need to put the right leadership in with the right priorities and vision in place,” Murphy said.
And in a major departure from Christie, Murphy supports a sanctuary state to protect immigrants. He’s also committed to pushing back on President Donald Trump’s federal tax plan and protecting DREAMERS from deportation.
“I leave you today grateful, happy and a better man than I was when I walked in here for the first time eight years ago,” he said.
The former Wall Street executive and political newcomer, Murphy’s election places the governor’s office in Democratic hands for the first time since 2009. Democrats also control both houses of the Legislature.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)