Hassan Goes to Washington: Former Governor Takes Office as Newest N.H. Senator | New Hampshire Public Radio

Hassan Goes to Washington: Former Governor Takes Office as Newest N.H. Senator

Jan 3, 2017

Sen. Maggie Hassan made it official Tuesday, formally taking office as the newest member of New Hampshire’s Congressional delegation.

Hassan was sworn-in by Vice President Joe Biden in a series of ceremonies at the U.S. Capitol in Washington – first, officially, on the Senate floor, and again during a reenactment meant to give senators a chance to mark the occasion with their families.

Among those joining Hassan for the festivities were her husband and children, other family members and a longtime caregiver for Hassan’s son, Ben, who has cerebral palsy.

Biden, who's known for bantering freely with senators' families during the biennial swearing-in ceremonies, greeted Hassan as such: "Maggie, Maggie, Maggie! How good to see you, kid."

"This is the proudest moment," Biden told Hassan and her husband, moments after reenacting the oath of office for the cameras. "One of the most proud."

"And I know you didn't want to do it," Biden added, prompting a laugh from Hassan in response.

Hassan, who just wrapped up two terms as New Hampshire's chief executive, is now the second woman in history to serve as both a governor and U.S. Senator. The only other woman to hold that distinction is New Hampshire's Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, who was elected to the Senate in 2008 after serving three terms as governor.

New Hampshire now also claims the country's first-ever all-female, all-Democratic Congressional delegation: Hassan, Shaheen, Congresswoman Annie Kuster and Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter.

The state also sent the country's first-ever all-female delegation, of any party makeup, to Congress in 2012. All the names were the same, except for one: That group also included Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte, who Hassan narrowly defeated last fall.

You can watch the official swearing-in ceremony below, and the full swearing-in ceremony with Biden, Hassan and Hassan's family can be viewed right here.