Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey was sworn in for her second full term


FILE – Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey speaks after the Republican victory in the re-election November 8, 2022 in Montgomery, Ala. Ivey will begin her second full term on Monday, January 16, 2023 with her inauguration. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)


Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey was sworn in Monday for her second full term as governor.

Ivey, 78, took the oath of office on the steps of the Alabama Capitol in front of hundreds of people. She will give her inaugural address this morning.

Ivey is the state’s second female governor and the first Republican woman elected to the post. Her inauguration on Monday coincides with the anniversary of the inauguration of the state’s first woman governor, Gov. Lurleen Wallace, as governor on January 16, 1967. Ivey has called Wallace one of her heroes.

Ivey was lieutenant governor but automatically became governor in 2017 when the governor at the time. Robert Bentley abruptly resigned amid an impeachment inquiry. Ivey won the post in 2018 and again in 2022.

During her final term, Ivey championed a number of GOP priorities. She signed an abortion ban in 2019 that bans abortion at any stage of pregnancy, with no exceptions for pregnancies the result of rape and incest. The abortion ban came into effect after the US Supreme Court returned the issue of abortion to state control.

She also signed legislation that eliminated the requirement to obtain a state license to carry a concealed handgun. She highlighted the legislation in a campaign ad, in which she pulled a Smith & Wesson .38 from her purse while seated at the governor’s desk.

But Ivey didn’t have an easy path to the GOP nomination last year, as Republican main challengers criticized her push for a gas tax hike as well as her handling of the COVID-19 pandemic with state business closures and mask orders.

However, the governor defeated her opponents — including former Trump ambassador Lindy Blanchard and Tim James, the son of a former Alabama governor — without being forced into the runoff. Ivey easily won the November general election, defeating Democrat Yolanda Flowers and Libertarian James Blake.

Lt. gov. Will Ainsworth, Attorney General Steve Marshall, Secretary of State Wes Allen and other national elected officials were also sworn in during the dedication ceremony.

This story was originally published January 16, 2023 10:15 am.