Republican Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka was sworn to her first term in by her son, Joseph, a major in the U.S. Army.
Topinka is making a return to statewide office, having previously served as treasurer.
“It is good to be back,” Topinka said.
Topinka honored Democrat Dan Hynes, who left office today after three terms as comptroller. Hynes lost to Quinn in the governor primary by less than 10,000 votes.
She also thanked Nancy Kimme, a longtime staffer. Topinka said she’s taking office as Illinois’ chief financial officer at a tough time.
“We have seen that things have gone swimmingly in my absence. You know, running for the chief fiscal officer of a financially-strapped state kind of makes you wonder: what is she thinking?… Well let me tell you what I’m thinking its time to put aside any petty bickering, certainly any partisan fights, roll up our sleeves and turn this state around.”
The “what is she thinking” is a reference to the tagline of millions of dollars of TV attack ads that then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich ran against her in the 2006 governor’s election. Blagojevich did not finish out that term.
Topinka said both parties are responsible for the budget mess and need to work to dig the state out.
What was she thinking?
Welcome back, Judy. Welcome back.