Governor Rick Scott’s tightly scripted inaugural ceremony began with a heavy dose of scripture on Tuesday.
Scott was serenaded by church choirs and prayed for by clergy from across the state at an early morning prayer breakfast at Florida A&M University.
Pam Olsen, pastor of the International House of Prayer of Tallahassee, urged the public to ask that Scott receive divine guidance.
Olsen has never been shy about her beliefs. She and her supporters erected a nativity scene this year at the Florida Capitol.
“I encourage you to pray daily, by name, for our leaders, for all of them, for our cabinet members, our governor, our lieutenant governor, because God likes specific prayers and he wants us to pray for our leaders,” she said.
Reverend Doctor Mathieu JN-Baptiste, head of the United Haitian Baptist Church, attributed divine influence for putting Scott over the top in his narrow election victory.
“You won the election and you are here today as the choice of God for the state of Florida,” he said.
Scott supporter and FAMU alumnus Duchess Gay arrived at the breakfast before dawn. The Central Florida resident says Scott earned his claim to be governor and chief job creator.
“He has done a good job coming down to Orlando and making good communications with a lot of network opportunities with the major employers of the area,” she said.
But opponents aren’t buying it.
Allison Tant, chair of the Florida Democratic Party, says Scott’s budget cuts undermine any recruiting efforts.
“But we want people to have quality jobs, we want people to have more opportunity, to go to school, to go to college, to get job training to get the appropriate education so that they can go to work.”
Scott sat reverently throughout the ceremony before heading to the Capitol to be sworn in.